Did Pew stumble in its annual poll on support for evolution, exaggerating Republican-Democrat differences??

Image via Christian Science Monitor.

According to a poll released last week the Pew Research Center’s Religion and Public Life Project, nearly a third of Americans reject the idea of evolution, but among Republicans the percentage is nearly 50 percent.

“Significantly fewer Republicans believe in evolution than did so four years ago, setting them apart from Democrats and independents, according,” Pew found.

Sixty percent of Americans say that “humans and other living things have evolved over time,” according to the survey. Breaking the figures down by political belief, sixty-seven percent of Democrats, 65 percent of independents, but only 43 percent of Republicans believe in some form of evolution, whether guided by supernatural forces or due to natural processes.

The survey, however, has been called into question. According to blogger Dan Kahan, Pew may have designed its questions to heighten differences in belief between Democrats and Republicans because the study fails to acknowledge that a high proportion of members of both political parties reject “naturalistic” evolution, the idea that evolution has occurred due to natural causes, in favor of “theistic” evolution, or the notion that belief in a Supreme Being who “guides” evolution is compatible with scientific views on natural selection.

Read the full, original article: Have Republicans changed views on evolution? Or have creationists changed party? Pew’s (half-released) numbers don’t add up … 

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