Poll Shows Huge Ideological Gap Among Americans on Domestic Issues

I rarely look at polls, but this one, the ABC News/Fusion Poll, is significantly revealing in the picture it paints of the huge disparity among Americans of voting age as to issues of women in the workplace, race and employment, immigration, role of and trust in our government, Obamacare, and, what I found most interesting, the wide gap between Democrats, Republicans, Independents, the under 30 and over 30 age groups on the importance of religion in determining the stature of our elected officials.

An interesting find was that among adults age 18 to 31, just 54 percent report that they’re registered to vote. That soars to 87 percent among those 32 and older. Indeed it increases steadily with age, peaking at 94 percent of seniors.

The poll was conducted by telephone Oct. 17-20, 2013, in English and Spanish, among a random national sample of 1,002 adults.

Here is a sampling of the breakdown on the issue of religion [and traditional Christian morals] and policies that engage the natural law and the liberty of citizens to live by it::

ABC News: Fewer than half of all adults, 45 percent, say political leaders should rely somewhat or a great deal on their religious beliefs when making policy decisions. But again the range is wide: Six in 10 conservatives, as many Republicans and 65 percent of conservative Republicans hold this view. That falls sharply to 39 percent of Democrats and independents alike, four in 10 moderates and 32 percent of liberals.

Partisan and ideological differences of 20, 30, 40 and even 50 points raise challenging questions of how political accommodation can occur in this country – a consideration that may gain urgency in the aftermath of the 16-day partial government shutdown prompted by a political dispute over the new federal health care law. In an ABC News/Washington Post poll this week, 75 percent of liberal Democrats supported that law; 76 percent of conservative Republicans opposed it.

These sorts of divisions, it should be noted, aren’t new; wide gaps between partisan and ideological groups long have been apparent on these issues and others. But they’re of particular interest now given the evidence of the damage they can do to the ability of Congress and the White House to keep the government running.

You can read this poll’s results on other issues here.