Drill-down of Catholics’ opinion on foreign policy; Positions of eight types of Catholics

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Corner of Church & State, an RNS blog

This graphic is not available for republication

This graphic is not available for republication

This graphic is not available for republication

This post updates our graph of the foreign policy views held by members of American churches and religion. See this post for the graph, including details on how it was put together.

Catholics are not uniform on their foreign policy opinions. In this graph, I compare the positions of eight types of Catholics (click here for details on these eight types). The result is that we can see the diversity of views among American Catholics.

The most notable feature of this graph is that Catholic groups are not spaced all over the graph. Instead, they span the lower left (domestic focus and diplomacy) to the upper right (a strong military and interventionist).  The eight types of Catholics fall along this diagonal:

  • Modern Catholics are centrists on both dimensions and are near to the average position of all Catholics (that is, the position when we put all Catholics together).
  • Latinos are more divided on foreign policy than they were on domestic issues. Modern Latinos are the most supportive Catholics of diplomacy over a strong military.
  • Not practicing Catholics are more isolationist than modern or traditional Catholics.
  • As with domestic issues, traditional Catholics hold positions similar to many evangelicals. Traditional Catholics are the most interventionist and the most supportive of using a strong military to ensure peace.

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