Black Republicans put most faith in US government

October 29, 2014

Black Republicans trust the United States government more than other political groups, finds a new study from the University of British Columbia, ahead of the mid-term U.S. elections to be held on November 4.

Using election data from 1958 - 2012, the study measures the role race plays in determining levels of government trust for black and white Americans. While both groups show similar levels of political trust, when party lines are factored in, black Republicans are revealed to be the most faithful.

"Being both black and Republican is seen by some as going against one's self interest," says study author and sociology professor Rima Wilkes. "It's likely that in order to identify as a black Republican, albeit a very small group, one must have an unusual confidence in the political system and its fairness, irrespective of who is in charge."

Previous studies have found democracies work best when citizens trust their government. According to the UBC study, Americans trusted the government the most in the 1960s when Lyndon Johnson was president. Americans trusted the government the least in 1980, 1994 and 2008 when Jimmy Carter, Bill Clinton and George W. Bush were president.

"Ideally, people would trust the government no matter who is in power, but this study shows U.S. voters place a lot of faith on individual leaders," says Wilkes.

In addition to political trust, the study measured the likeability of each president from the past half-century based on race and party affiliation.

The study found that black and white Democrats have liked Barack Obama more than any other president since 1958. Richard Nixon was the most liked president of black Republicans in 1974 and George W. Bush was the most liked president of white Republicans in 2002.


The study, We Trust in Government, Just not In Yours: Race, Partisanship, and Political Trust, 1958 - 2012, appears in the journal, Social Science Research, and is available online here. The print version will be published in early 2015.

The study did not measure trust or support levels of other races due to a lack of sufficient data.

The likeability of each president was determined by the data's presidential thermometer measure. Respondents were asked to rate presidents on a scale of 0 to 100 with 0 indicating feeling "cold" and 100 indicating feeling "warm."

The study also revealed:
To view figures from this study, click the links below.

Political trust of black and white Americans, 1958 - 2012

Political trust of black and white Republicans and Democrats, 1958 - 2012

Presidential thermometer, 1958 - 2012

More figures, along with a more detailed explanation for each, are available in the study, found at:

University of British Columbia

Related Race Articles from Brightsurf:

Why do so many parents avoid talking about race?
BU social psychologists share ways adults can overcome their own assumptions and discomfort to talk honestly about race with children.

New Texas poll: Trump up in close race
President Donald Trump has an apparent lead over former Vice President Joe Biden in a close contest for Texas' 38 electoral votes according to a new poll of likely voters in the state released today.

Children notice race several years before adults want to talk about it
Adults in the United States believe children should be almost 5 years old before talking with them about race, even though some infants are aware of race and preschoolers may have already developed racist beliefs, according to new research published by the American Psychological Association.

Having a doctor who shares the same race may ease patient's angst
When doctors are the same race as their patients, it can sometimes forge a sense of comfort that helps to reduce anxiety and pain, particularly for Black patients, new research from the University of Miami suggests.

How can you sleep during a solo sailing race?
Weeks of sailing on a 6 meters boat, nothing but the ocean for four thousand miles.

How race affects listening during political conversations
A new study offers a rare look at how black and white people listen to each other during political discussions, including those that touch on controversial issues about race.

Race-specific lupus nephritis biomarkers
A University of Houston biomedical researcher has discovered a difference in urinary biomarker proteins of lupus nephritis in patients according to race.

How race is associated with differences among patients with hypertrophic cardiomyopathy
Researchers in this observational study looked at how race was associated with difference in symptoms, access to care, genetic testing and clinical outcomes among 2,467 patients (8.3% black and 91.7% white) with hypertrophic cardiomyopathy, a condition where the heart muscle becomes abnormally thick, which can make it harder to pump blood.

Breastfeeding disparities among us children by race/ethnicity
Overall rates of breastfeeding increased from 2009 to 2015 but they varied by race/ethnicity in this observational study that used national survey data for nearly 168,000 infants in the United States.

Is giant cell arteritis associated with race?
Giant cell arteritis is an inflammation of the blood vessels that typically occurs in adults over 50 and, if left untreated, can result in irreversible vision loss and death.

Read More: Race News and Race Current Events is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to