New research from the Institute for Family Studies is showing that while politically mixed marriages – those marriages where the husband is of one political party and his wife of another – are on the rise, up to 21% of all marriage, they also tend to be less happy than marriages where both of the same political party. And the same data also show that Red Marriages tend to be happier than Blue Marriages by some margin. When asked about being “completely satisfied” with their family life, the numbers broke down among marital political make-up accordingly:
- Both Republican: 61% report being completely happy with family life.
- Both Democrat: 55% report being completely happy with family life.
- Mixed Party: 47% report being completely happy with family life.
Which couples are least happy by party affiliation? That would be a Democrat married to an Independent. Only 35 percent of them said they were completely happy with their family life.
Wendy Wang, who serves as director of research for the Institute for Family Studies, also explains that conservatives are markedly more likely to be married compared to their more liberal fellow citizens. She explains that according to the latest data from the gold-standard General Social Surve, 36% of liberals are currently not, nor have ever been married, 11 percentage points higher than the share among conservatives (25%) who have never been married. And this gap has been widening over the last few decades where in 1974, the space between the two groups was just 5 percentage points.
The numbers are even more dramatic when we consider religious commitment as well. Secular liberals are dramatically most likely to have never been married at 39 percent, while religious conservatives are the least likely at only 18 percent. Interestingly, religious liberals and non-religious conservatives are on par with each somewhere in the middle at about 28 percent. But as we can see in the chart below, the marriage rate among religious liberals has fluctuated up and down over the last few decades more dramatically than for any of the four groups.
It appears that not only do conservatives tend to be more likely to be married, they also seem to be happier in their marriages and family life compared to both Democrats and Independents. Research shows that being a religious, conservative Republican appears to be very good for one’s marriage and family life. And that is good for society.
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