In reports of its exit polling questions for Virginia’s gubernatorial election, CNN seems to have assumed that only white people could be “born-again Christians.”
In its survey of voters, the news agency categorized respondents through a wide variety of demographic identifiers. One can assume pollsters asked about race and religion separately, but on page three of its exit results document, CNN rolls the two variables into one question: “are you white born-again Christian?”
The report notes that 73 percent of the total said “no,” while only 27 percent said “yes.”
Strangely, this was the only religious-themed question released in their survey results. No other categories, such as born-again Christians of color, were deemed newsworthy.
Gallup, another polling agency, found in 2005 that black Americans were more likely than whites to identify themselves as born-again Christians.
In that survey, Gallup noted, “Black Americans are far more likely to identify themselves as born-again or evangelical, with 63% of blacks saying they are born-again, compared with 39% of white Americans.”
Among the election’s top candidates, E.W. Jackson, the Republican nominee for Lieutenant Governor, was both black and an evangelical Christian.