Republicans More Likely to be Happily Married Than Democrats, New Study Reveals

By Nancy Flory Published on December 6, 2018

Republicans are more likely to be stably and happily married than Democrats or Independents, a new study says. The American Family Survey, sponsored by the Deseret News and the Center for the Study of Elections and Democracy, was released earlier this year. In part, it found that there is a partisan divide in both marriage and family life.

W. Bradford Wilcox is Director of the National Marriage Project at the University of Virginia and a Senior Fellow of the Institute for Family Studies. He serves on the Advisory Board of the American Family Survey. Wilcox was “struck” by four key points while reading a report based on the survey. He explains in a December 4, 2018, article.

The Marriage Gap

First, there is a marriage gap when it comes to support for Donald Trump. The gap is almost as large as the gender and education gaps. “This is particularly true for men,” writes Wilcox. Half of married men approve of Trump. Only 40 percent or less of unmarried men approve of Trump. Thirty-five percent or more of married women approve of Trump. Only 31 percent or less of their unmarried peers approve of Trump. “This marriage gap has been largely ignored by the media, but it’s worth thinking more about why marital status is so closely connected to partisanship in America.”

Conservative Values

Second, Republicans and conservatives really do live the values they profess. “Republicans are 17 percentage points more likely to be married. Conservatives are 9 percentage points less likely to say their relationship is in trouble, [and] Republicans are 21 percentage points more likely to say ‘being married’ is ‘essential to living a fulfilling life.'” Other essentials include having kids, being part of a religious community, community engagement, and a rewarding job. In each area, Republicans were more likely to say they were essential than Democrats or Independents.

“There shouldn’t be a partisan divide in institutionalizing lifelong love. But here we are.”

Culture and Community Important

Third, the results conflict with the widespread belief that the marriage gap is mostly a matter of education and income. “This survey suggests that the divide is not that simple,” writes Wilcox. “It’s also about culture and community.” Wilcox points out that the marriage gap and the education gap are equal, at 17 percentage points. Religion is important, too. His research suggests that “religiosity is as good a predictor of where you land on the marriage divide as is education. So, when we think about the marriage divide, we need to think about the 3 Cs: cash, culture and community.”

Higher Marriage Commitment

Egalitarianism — or a 50-50 model of marriage — still isn’t essential for happy, fulfilled marriages today. Some argue that upper-middle-class marriages today are more successful than working-class or poor couples because they have a 50-50 model marriage. Wilcox doesn’t agree. “Why is it that Republicans and conservatives generally report more marital happiness and stability than do other Americans? Is it because they are more egalitarian? I doubt that.” He says it’s more likely that it’s because of “higher levels of joint marital commitment on the part of Republican spouses.” He points out that the 50-50 model of marriage isn’t a necessary ingredient for making a good marriage. “It certainly may be necessary for egalitarian-minded couples, but that’s not everyone.”

Partisanship and Marriage

Finally, Wilcox found that “Republicans are more likely to be married, to value marriage, and to be in no-drama relationships.” The patterns may also, in part, point to “generational, racial, religious, and socioeconomic differences between parties. That is, I’m not making strong claims about causality here when it comes to partisanship and marriage.”

Help us champion truth, freedom, limited government and human dignity. Support The Stream »

He wishes there weren’t a partisan divide in marriage and family life. He says the divide feeds into ideological and political divisions. It also suggests that marriage isn’t as appealing or accessible to those who aren’t conservative or Republican. It’s not something to boast about, since most Americans are not Republican.

“There shouldn’t be a partisan divide in institutionalizing lifelong love. But here we are.”

Print Friendly
Comments ()
The Stream encourages comments, whether in agreement with the article or not. However, comments that violate our commenting rules or terms of use will be removed. Any commenter who repeatedly violates these rules and terms of use will be blocked from commenting. Comments on The Stream are hosted by Disqus, with logins available through Disqus, Facebook, Twitter or G+ accounts. You must log in to comment. Please flag any comments you see breaking the rules. More detail is available here.
  • Lisa

    Conservatives would be more likely to look to the old ways and want to retain past good traditions, I’d expect, more than liberal progressives. I also think leftists believe lies about how the world actually works, which would make marriage harder to succeed at. And knowing we’re both sinners makes me more humble and patient toward my husband than I might have been, otherwise, and him towards me.

    • apollo

      Who can understand self and our place in the world with out the revelation of the Holy spirit?

      • Iris D. Lynch

        Jesus said “Love thy neighbor AS thyself.” not INSTEAD of thy self, as it is so often interpreted.

        • apollo

          We are to conform to the image of God. In my meditations the Holy Spirit said ” you (we) are the Givers giver.” There is no selfishness in God nor should their be any in us.

          • Iris D. Lynch

            So? How does that go against what Jesus said? Surely he meant that no individual should treat someone else BETTER than one’s self. After all, God has given us life and surely He does not want us to treat that gift with disdain.

          • Iris D. Lynch

            So you would save your neighbor before you saved yourself or your child. Sorry, that will never make sense to me and I cannot BELIEVE that is what Jesus meant.

          • apollo

            I save no one. It is God’s decision who He saves.

          • Iris D. Lynch

            I have no argument with that.

  • Adam

    A study had to be conducted to prove this? When I read the headline, my response was “no Duh”. Dems are miserable, hateful, generally evil people. They could never be happy with one partner, or commitment, they have the mentality of a 5 year old

  • MAGA now

    Not just happily married, but happier people overall. Libs by definition must always have something to be appauled at or triggered by. As many have said, liberalism is a mental disorder. In some ways it is very much like depression and needing to be on suicide watch. For some libs it manifests itself as multiple personality disorder. Based on public information the disorder can lead some to do mass murder.

  • apollo

    If you abide in the Spiritual Body of Christ , you are promised peace.

    Philippians 4:7 New International Version (NIV)

    7 And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.

    • whowhatme

      “Do onto others as you would have them do onto you.” Libtards have no knowledge on what this phrase means…..

      • apollo

        With out the soul transforming power of the Holy Spirit either would we. I was thinking this morning about what we as believers are going through at this time and reminded myself that although we live on the same planet we all live in different worlds.

  • Iris D. Lynch

    The Miracle of Self Power explains it all, including why some folks have a ‘good’ life and others do not. Quite simply: Power Shared is Power Squared. The Democrats/Liberals BELIEVE that others have their power and they fight constantly for power OVER others, ignoring the only TRUE power they (or anyone) will ever have, and that is Power Over Self…SELF POWER.

    So knock yourselves out, Dems and TRY ever harder to OVER POWER US. That has never worked (Communism, dictatorships, spouse beaters) and NEVER WILL. And yes, I am the author.

    • whowhatme

      DNC Liberals/Communists pride themselves on the globalization of society and talk about the world no longer being comprised of “Nations” but of “People” that they have blinded themselves to the “True Evils” of the world. They truly believe that the world will automatically homogenize itself and there will be no more “Us versus Them”. Due to this way of thinking they have already dug their own graves. This way of thinking creates only chaos. They are so adamant on standing aside or stepping back and allowing what they believe to be “individuals” do what they want, that they have blinded themselves to the rise/actions of evil, i.e. ISIS, Soros, MS13, etc. God help us if Trump does not get reelected in 2020. In closing, I cannot wait to see all of the Libtards Heads exploding once President Trump gets reelected.

  • What this study is really saying (and non-Republican/Conservative people are going to hate it and, likely, get triggered by it) is that Republican/Conservative people are more “other” oriented, while non-Republican/Conservative people tend to be more “me” oriented.

    • off the reservation

      Sure, I see that. Conservatives have morals and standards. They care about others in both thought and deed. They go to church and value commitments. Where liberals/leftists are more likely to never get married or have affairs. They don’t have morals and don’t value rule of law, so commitment is not present in their minds.

  • John Woodstone

    Conservatives tend to believe in God and religious values, Democrats values tend to be at odds with religion like abortion and gay marriage. Also I’ve seen Democrats tend to worship government as a God because in their minds, government can fix anything.

  • whowhatme

    This is so very “True”, every DemocRat I know is a friggin “Miserable” person…..

    • Chief Tomahawk ✓AntiGlobalist

      Every. Damn. One.

  • CFLAP

    A state marriage license is a contract with the devil and one of the biggest frauds ever perpetrated on people.

  • James

    People who are younger and live in urban areas are more likely to vote Democratic and less likely to be in a stable marriage relationship.

  • GB

    Much more likely to be happy at all….Dems are angry

  • realvegasdawn

    Works for us!

  • Scattergood Baines

    Angry, bitter, emotionally fragile, and angry and bitter doesn’t make for a happy relationship.

Inspiration
He Cast Himself in a Surprising Role
Al Perrotta
More from The Stream
Connect with Us