Iowa's votes depend on religious views

Nov. 2, 2012 at 2:11 PM

DES MOINES, Iowa, Nov. 2 (UPI) -- Iowa's six electoral votes may be key in this year's presidential election, its evangelical and Catholic voters conflicted in their choice of candidates.

Of approximately 3 million Iowans, 30 percent call themselves evangelical or Catholic, and take seriously the candidates' positions on abortion and other social issues, CNN reported Friday.

Unaffiliated voter Mwasi Mwamba said he has looked at Gov. Mitt Romney's past abortion positions and his record as governor of Massachusetts, noting, "It's not been an easy choice to make either way."

His wife Dawn said she intends to vote for Romney but her religious views do not align with his or those of President Barack Obama, calling her choice "the lesser of two evils."

Mike Pike, an evangelical Christian, said he will not vote for either candidate, saying abortion and the definition of marriage are non-negotiable issues for him and the candidates have "failed on both of those."

Some Catholic voters in traditionally Democratic Dubuque say they are split on the issues of abortion, same-sex marriage and funding for contraception, CNN reported, and disagree on whether the poor are best helped through government programs or private charity.

Dawn Luekin, a Catholic, those are issues "most Catholics hold dear and central to their faith, but then there's this belief that remains that the Democratic Party somehow cares for the poor better."

Obama won 54 percent of the Catholic vote and 26 percent of the evangelical vote, nationwide, in the 2008 election, the Pew Forum on Religion and Public Life said.

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