According to a new paper in the International Journal for the Psychology of Religion, where you vote may influence how you vote.
The suggestion is that visual cues of churches or religious buildings lead people to vote more conservatively, “and the effect seems to hold, whether you’re Christian, Muslim or agnostic, progressive, independent or conservative.”
This is an intriguing suggestion because if you’re anything like me, you always resent when they hold a poll or public forum in a church.
This is also a very testable hypothesis, outside of psychology. Elections Canada publishes poll-by-poll results, so one merely has to cross reference which polls were held in churches with those that weren’t. There’s 308 separate electoral districts to run the analysis for, and in each district there should be a decent number of religious and secular polls to contrast. With this much data, it should be possible to see if church voters are more likely to vote Conservative than NDP, Liberal, or Green.
Perhaps if I get really bored while job hunting, I may try to do the numbers for my own riding.