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In 2017 Liberals are More Politically Engaged than Conservatives

There is no doubt that 2016 was a good election year for conservative politics. Republicans control all the levers of power at the federal level and retain a substantial advantage over Democrats at the state level. However, with an election looming just 12 months away much of the energy is now among the political left. New PRRI analysis reveals that liberals more than conservatives are reporting substantially greater involvement across a range of different political activities within the last year.

A majority (51 percent) of liberals have publicly expressed their support for a political campaign or cause on Facebook, compared to about one-third (34 percent) of conservatives. Liberals are more than twice as likely as conservatives to have attended a political rally, campaign event, or town hall meeting (29 percent vs. 12 percent, respectively). More than one-third of liberals say that they have contacted an elected official (36 percent) while only 23 percent of conservatives say they have done this. One in three (33 percent) liberals have donated money to a political campaign or cause in the last 12 months an action taken by fewer than one in five (19 percent) of conservatives. Liberals are also far more likely than conservatives to have displayed a poster, bumper sticker, or pin supporting a candidate or cause (31 percent vs. 24 percent).

These results are consistent with research that has shown that protests are being dominated by left-leaning groups and individuals. According to analysis by researchers at The Washington Post, 83 percent of protests in August 2017 in the U.S. have been in opposition to Trump or his administration.