Responding to GOM’s earlier post wondering whether the religious left would take too much credit for Obama’s gains among the faithful, given that the economy was the primary motivator, Faith in Public Life’s Kristin Williams writes:
Saw your post on our religious vote memo. One point of clarification: though we do think the economy is only one piece of the puzzle, we agree that it’s a top priority for all voters. We pointed out that “Economic issues topped the list of most important issues among all religious groups” in our Faith and American Politics Survey findings and the memo states on pgs. 3-4, “A broader issue agenda also leads religious voters to view economic issues in moral terms. With the economy as the top issue of concern among all religious groups, organizations like Faith in Public Life, Faithful America, Catholics in Alliance for the Common Good and Sojourners have been emphasizing the moral imperatives inherent in economic policy with online actions and ad campaigns.”
Also, the general political conversation these days is “it’s the economy stupid.” From our religion & politics angle, we’re looking to contribute a more nuanced story. Of course the economy is effecting all voters, but this memo is about factors that uniquely influence religious voters, particularly evangelicals and Catholics.