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Yep, Evangelicals Prefer Clinton to Obama

Zogby releases data from pre-election surveys.

Zogby International conducted a survey for Faith in Public Life on how evangelicals voted in Missouri and Tennessee, but the polling firm has been asking the evangelical/born-again question of Democrats since the January 19 Nevada caucuses. PBS's Religion and Ethics Newsweekly scored the data, and it's Hillary across the board on the Democratic side.

In every contest, Hillary Clinton bests Barack Obama among white evangelicals, and her support is significantly higher among evangelicals than among white Protestants in general. It was closest in California, where 40 percent of white evangelicals likely to vote in the Democratic primary said they'd vote for Clinton and 38 percent said they'd vote for Obama (among white Protestants, the numbers were 38 percent and 43 percent respectively). White evangelical Democrats went 43/24 for Clinton in Georgia, 59/24 in Missouri (FPL's post-election survey put it at 54/37), and 59/27 in New Jersey.

But the Zogby data also has numbers for non-whites who identified as evangelical or born again (that's a rare thing in these kinds of surveys), and while Obama is overwhelmingly winning this group (often by a 2-to-1 margin or better), Hillary is doing significantly better with this group than she is with non-white Protestants in general.

Unfortunately, the Zogby data at the Religion and Ethics Newsweekly site doesn't give us the broad breakdowns, so we don't know how many evangelicals said they were likely to vote in a Democratic primary or caucus compared to those who said they were likely to vote in a Republican one. We don't know how many Democratic voters identified as evangelical, or how many of these were non-white.

But what we do know is that Hillary is doing better among evangelicals than she is among Protestants in general. And that's a surprise, especially since most pundits have assumed that Obama, not Clinton, is the evangelical favorite on the Democratic side.

See, pollsters? Asking the evangelical question gets you surprising data that news organizations like to talk about!

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