Barna Poll Finds Donald Trump Did Not Win More Evangelical Support Than Romney; Says President-elect’s Most Significant Support Came from ‘Notional Christians’

(PHOTO: REUTERS/MIKE SEGAR) U.S. President-elect Donald Trump (L) and former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney emerge after their meeting at the main clubhouse at Trump National Golf Club in Bedminster, New Jersey, U.S., November 19, 2016.
(PHOTO: REUTERS/MIKE SEGAR)
U.S. President-elect Donald Trump (L) and former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney emerge after their meeting at the main clubhouse at Trump National Golf Club in Bedminster, New Jersey, U.S., November 19, 2016.

A new national poll has found that Donald Trump did not actually win more evangelical support than 2012 Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney, and also found that Trump’s most significant support actually came from “notional Christians.”

Last week, the California-based evangelical polling firm, The Barna Group, released the results from its national online survey, which consisted of responses from a total of 1,281 adults that included 1,134 registered voters who were interviewed in two waves from Nov. 4 to Nov. 6 and Nov. 9 to Nov. 16.

The finding from the research, which had a margin of error of plus or minus 4 percentage points, contests the widely reported notion that Trump received a higher percentage of support from evangelicals (81 percent) than Romney in 2012 and Bush in 2004.

The claims that Trump earned more evangelical support are based off of exit polls, which found that Bush and Romney who both earned 78 percent of white evangelical/born-again Christians.

According to Barna, 79 percent of evangelicals, whom represented seven percent of total voters, voted for Trump. Barna’s analysis of the results states that Trump’s 79-percent mark with evangelicals “was actually the lowest level of evangelical support for a Republican candidate since Bob Dole lost to Bill Clinton in 1996.” In 2012, Barna found that 81 percent of evangelicals supported Romney. In 2016, 18 percent of evangelicals supported Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton.

“One of those misdiagnoses was their assertion that the election featured a record-breaking turnout among evangelicals. While their turnout was strong, it was not record-breaking,” George Barna, the founder of the organization said in a statement. “In fact, evangelicals’ concern over the character of both candidates kept many of them from choosing a candidate until very late in the process, and a higher-than-usual proportion of them voted for the more liberal candidate.”

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SOURCE: The Christian Post
Samuel Smith