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The Religious Sort

The Religious Sort

Chapter:
(p.189) Nine The Religious Sort
Source:
From Politics to the Pews
Author(s):
Michele F. Margolis
Publisher:
University of Chicago Press
DOI:10.7208/chicago/9780226555812.003.0009

Chapter 9 concludes by discussing the implications of the book’s main findings. First, the chapter considers how politically driven religious sorting has fundamentally transformed American politics and how politicians mobilize support. The Republican Party can directly target voters who are likely responsive to religious rhetoric and faith-based politics through churches and religious organizations. Democrats, in contrast, increasingly spend their Sundays outside of church and are less interested in religious justifications for public policies. Second, the chapter addresses how the findings change our understanding of identity politics more generally. Identities do not form in a vacuum but rather develop and change over time in response to outside influences. In light of these findings, scholars may have previously overestimated social group's influence on public opinion. The chapter concludes by offering avenues of future research in light of the book's main insights.

Keywords:   religion and politics, partisanship, political psychology, socialization, identity, polarization, public opinion

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