From Catholics to Gays: Broad GOP Appeal in 2010

Posted: Nov 05, 2010 1:14 PM
Over the last few days, I've received a torrent of emails from political interest groups peddling self-serving narratives based on Tuesday's election results.  Two such emails stand out.


The votes are in.  And the Catholic vote was decisive.

Republicans took control of the house in a massive sweep, while the Senate remains in the hands of the Democrats by a slim margin.

Early indications suggest the GOP won 53% of the Catholic vote with Democrats garnering 45% of Catholics, according to a CNN exit poll. After losing the Catholic vote by 10 points in 2008, this eight point advantage represents an 18-point shift in support to the Republican Party.

From GOProud:

Exit polling reveals that gay and lesbian voters played a critical role in the Republican Party’s historic gains in the U.S. House on Tuesday night. According to CNN, 31% of self-identified gay voters supported Republican candidates for the U.S. House. This number is a dramatic increase from the 19% GOP House candidates won among gay voters in 2008.

“Exit polling makes it clear gay voters played an important role in bringing conservative leadership to Congress,” said Jimmy LaSalvia, Executive Director of GOProud, the only national organization representing gay conservatives and their allies.

“It also proves something we have been saying for months now – that the Tea Party’s message of limiting government is something that appeals to many gay Americans.  The gay left would have you believe that gay conservatives don’t exist. Now we see that almost a third of self-identified gay voters cast ballots for Republican candidates for Congress in this year’s mid-term.”

Republicans earned 18-point and 12-point swings in their favor among Catholics and gay voters, respectively.  I very much doubt many backers overlap with GOProud supporters (and vice versa), yet each organization's core constituency moved decisively to the right in 2010.   This data, coupled with the impressive cast of newly-elected minority Republicans, effectively kills the Left's flawed meme that 2006 and 2008 marked the GOP's permanent relegation to marginal, regional status.