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K H
  • K H
  • Mercer Island, WA
  • United States

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According to a Pew Research Poll published on Dec. 30, 2013, only 43% of Republicans believe humans evolved over time. Why is this?

More than 60% of Independents and Democrats believe evolution. However fewer Republicans believe evolution than before. Republican belief in evolution has dropped from 54% in 2009 to 43% in 2013. I agree when the article claims that: " Differences in the racial and ethnic composition of Democrats and Republicans or differences in their levels of religious commitment do not wholly explain partisan differences in beliefs about evolution."
Here is the article: http://www.pewforum.org/2013/12/30/publics-views-on-human-evolution/

What is your opinion about this trend? What factors do you think are causing it? Do you expect this trend to continue?

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  • Jan 2 2014: I am more leaning toward evolution than toward creationism. But as a professional statistician, I am not impressed by this survey result. First of all, it is well known that Republicans are more religious, thus more of them believe in God. So what's wrong with that? But I also am a little skeptical about this estimated percentage based on the telephone survey. Most Republicans being Christians and also are in better financial conditions,(than corresponding Democrats,and Independents, and also some young and well educated Republicans), are more likely having telephones and having some one staying at home to attend to the phones. Thus, these republicans may not be a representative sample of the Republicans as a whole. For example many of the Republican college students were not likely to be included in the survey result.
    I am not saying that there wasn't a bona fide difference, but am saying that the "difference" MIGHT BE SOMEWHAT LESS THE REPORTED FIGURE. If Fritzie's figure is correct, then the 5% unexplained correlation beside the religious and ethnicity factors are not too far from random sampling error by chance.
    However, aside from the statistical razzle-dazzle, it is also not surprising to me that most Republicans are more socially conservative. I agree completely with Lawren that most Republican Governors and Congress reps are too socially conservative against my personal taste. I also believe that the current liberals don't have any fiscal discipline, they think that money can grow on trees rather than from the printing press, i e. the DEBT GENERATING MACHINE.
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      K H

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      Jan 3 2014: Pollsters have been working on controlling for challenges caused by changing IT usage trends. If your research design is well done and sampling sub-populations are well defined you can overcome these problems and obtain representative samples.

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