That’s the upshot of a Gallup Poll analysis just released here hooked to Obama’s upcoming Notre Dame commencement address. On the “moral acceptability” of abortion and embryonic stem cell research, Catholics mirror the wider populations, with 4 in 10 saying abortion can be morally acceptable and 63 percent saying the same for ESCR.

But as the graph below shows, Catholics are significantly more liberal than other Americans on a number of other hot-button issues, such as premarital sex, homosexuality, the death penalty, and gambling. (Okay, no surprise on that last one.)

Gallup chart one.gifThe kicker is that even regular mass-goers, while hewing more to church teachings on thes eissues that Catholics overall, are still more “liberal” than regular churchgoers of other denominations. They write:

The accompanying table shows that regular churchgoers who are Catholic are significantly more liberal than churchgoing non-Catholics on gambling, sex before marriage, homosexual relations, having a baby out of wedlock, and divorce. Committed Catholics are at least slightly more likely than devout non-Catholics to say that abortion and embryonic stem-cell research — the two key issues highlighted by those protesting Obama’s appearance at Notre Dame — are morally acceptable. Only on the death penalty are committed Catholics more conservative than regular churchgoers who are not Catholic.

Not sure how to figure that capital punishment one–especially after New Mexicso’s recent ban. Ideas? Anyway, the proof is in the table. Read it…and weep?

Gallup chart two.gif 

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