The Corner

Politics & Policy

The Irreligious Vote

Daniel Cox (an AEI colleague of mine) and Amelia Thomson-DeVeaux are asking why Democrats aren’t doing more to court it.

More than one-third of the people who voted for Clinton in 2016 were religiously unaffiliated, making them just as electorally important for Democrats as white evangelical Protestants are for Republicans. Yet despite constantly hearing about the importance of white evangelical voters in an election cycle, Democratic politicians have been slow to embrace the growing number of nonreligious people who vote for them. Why?

One possibility that comes to my mind: Democrats are courting a large segment of these voters through their support for social liberalism and wokeness, which have come for that segment to function as a partial substitute for religion.

Ramesh Ponnuru is a senior editor for National Review, a columnist for Bloomberg Opinion, a visiting fellow at the American Enterprise Institute, and a senior fellow at the National Review Institute.