More than 60 percent of Republicans want the U.S. to be declared a Christian nation, according to a new poll.
Christian nationalism has quickly become the far-right’s new branding of choice, championed by prominent Republicans like U.S. Reps. Marjorie Taylor Greene and Lauren Boebert, and Pennsylvania state Sen. Doug Mastriano, the party’s nominee for governor in that key swing state. Proponents of Christian nationalism have said there should be no barrier between church and state in the U.S., an explicit rebuke of the First Amendment and one of the U.S.’ founding ideals.
And Republican voters are embracing one of Christian nationalism’s central tenets too, according to the Politico/University of Maryland poll published Wednesday.
A clear majority of Republicans—57 percent—said they don’t believe declaring the U.S. a Christian nation would be constitutional. But when asked whether they favor or oppose declaring the U.S. a Christian nation, an even larger share of Republicans, 61 percent, supported doing so.
Greene tweeted a link to the poll Wednesday and added “In God we trust.”
Fewer than one in five Democratic voters supported declaring Christianity the official religion of the United States, and overall, 62 percent of Americans opposed doing so, according to Politico. Unsurprisingly, nearly 80 percent of Republicans and more than half of Democrats who described themselves as born-again or evangelical Christians supported declaring the U.S. a Christian nation.
The responses also exposed deep generational divides: A majority of Americans born before 1964 who responded to the poll said they support declaring the U.S. a Christian nation, while just a quarter of millenials and 34 percent of Gen Z respondents said the same.
Evangelical Christianity has long been inextricably linked with the right-wing in the U.S. During a conversation with Family Research Council president Tony Perkins last week, Oklahoma Sen. James Lankford implied that the Christian God rewarded Oklahoma for its abortion ban with rain in June following a long drought, according to secular news website Only Sky. (The Oklahoma City area experienced flooding as a result of the rain, as Only Sky noted.)
Advocates for secularism sounded the alarm about the poll Wednesday.
“A majority of Republicans say declaring the United States a Christian nation would be unconstitutional but let's do it anyway,” the Secular Coalition of America tweeted. “This is the party that may control the House. Don't forget to vote.”
Nick Fish, the president of American Atheists, said in a tweet: “I never want to hear the phrase "Constitutional Conservative" from any of these people ever again.”