Were the Pentecostals important to Howard?

Last week, commenter Krystian suggested that flat figures on party support by religious attendance suggested that groups like Hillsong had little influence on support for the Howard government. In the data I have, I can’t directly examine Hillsong, which is buried in the broader category of Pentecostal. But we can roughly estimate the electoral impact of Pentecostal churches.

As the figure below suggests, Pentecostal numbers have been increasing. Between 1996 and 2006, Pentecostal numbers increased by 26%, compared to a 10% increase in other religions. However, they are still a small proportion of all those declaring a religion in the census. In that decade, their market share went from 1.07% to 1.23%.

Source: ABS, census, various years. Continue reading “Were the Pentecostals important to Howard?”