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Faith-Based Voters Poised to Shape 2024 Presidential Election

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As the 2024 presidential election draws nearer, the role of religious voters is emerging as a critical factor that could sway the contest between President Biden and former President Donald Trump.

Throughout American history, religion has consistently influenced presidential elections, from John F. Kennedy's groundbreaking presidency as the first Catholic President to the rise of influential movements like the Moral Majority and Christian Coalition.
Recent polling data reveals a significant trend. President Biden is trailing Donald Trump among voters who regularly attend religious services, a phenomenon extending beyond the traditional support base of evangelical Christians.

This shift underscores a growing coalition of religiously motivated voters rallying behind Trump, in many cases driven by his conservative policies.
"It's becoming increasingly clear that President Trump's appeal among religious voters is expanding," observed Nathan Gonzalez of Inside Elections. "As we approach Election Day, every vote, particularly from faith voters, will be crucial."

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Trump has strategically emphasized religious liberty and pro-life policies, presenting himself as a champion of traditional American values. "We must protect religious liberty, defend freedom of speech, and uphold the sanctity of innocent lives," Trump reiterated in recent speeches, resonating strongly within religious communities.
Jay Richards, a scholar at the Heritage Foundation, highlights the deepening divide on religious issues. "Despite his outward adherence to Catholicism, Joe Biden remains steadfastly pro-abortion, which continues to alienate many religiously inclined voters."
President Biden, despite his Catholic background, faces significant challenges within religious communities due to his staunch pro-choice stance on abortion. This position has led to a discernible erosion of support among Catholic voters, a demographic pivotal in previous elections and increasingly leaning towards Trump.
"There is an undeniable schism among voters regarding the role of religion in our nation," notes Pastor Sam Rodriguez of New Season Church. "Supporters of Trump are more inclined towards policies that promote greater religious influence in public life."

Latina voters have voiced strong reservations about abortion. "Find me one Latina woman who believes it is morally acceptable to abort a baby in the eighth month or ninth month, just find me one," Rodriguez said. He says this sentiment underscores significant cultural and religious concerns within this demographic.

Biden's policies on issues like religious freedom and LGBTQ rights have stirred concerns among segments of the religious electorate, particularly those who prioritize traditional family values. These policy positions have further deepened the polarization among religious voters, contributing to a more fragmented electoral landscape.
Support for Biden has also seen declines among other religious groups, including Jewish voters, traditionally a stronghold for Democratic candidates, due to the Biden administration's stance on Israel and response to rising antisemitism. 

Similarly, Biden's outreach to Muslim communities, while initially strong, has faced challenges amidst debates over religious freedom and national security policies.
As the election approaches, political analysts emphasize that the allegiance of religious voters could ultimately determine the outcome. With both campaigns intensifying their outreach efforts in the final stretch, analysts say the votes cast by religious Americans will wield significant influence, potentially tipping the scales on Election Day. 

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About The Author


Tara Mergener is an award-winning journalist and expert storyteller who spent the majority of her career as a correspondent in Washington, D.C. She worked at CBS Newspath for many years, reporting for all CBS platforms, including CBS News and CBS affiliates throughout the nation. Tara also reported at CNN, Hearst’s Washington, D.C. Bureau, and was a contributor on Full Court Press with Greta Van Susteren. Tara has won dozens of awards for her investigative and political reporting, including Headliner Foundation’s Best Reporter in Texas, multiple Edward R. Murrow awards, Texas Associated Press