- The Washington Times - Tuesday, January 15, 2002

More than 80 percent of Ivy League professors who voted in 2000 picked Democrat Al Gore and just 9 percent voted for Republican George W. Bush, according to a new survey.
The poll by Luntz Research Companies also found that only 3 percent of the professors describe themselves as Republicans and that Bill Clinton was the Ivy League faculty's pick for best president of the past 40 years.
"All that this survey shows is what we already know, that the elite universities are subsidiaries of the Democratic Party and political left," said David Horowitz, president of the Center for the Study of Popular Culture, which commissioned the poll.
Frank Luntz, the Republican pollster whose firm conducted the survey, said he was "disappointed" to find such political conformity.
"I think if parents saw the political leanings of these professors, they'd be upset," he said. "I think universities should insist on the same diversity in their faculty that they look for in their students . I have a problem when these faculties have no Republican or conservative representation at all."
The poll available on the Web at www.frontpagemagazine.com not only surveyed the professors' general views, but also asked their opinions on specific issues, and compared those responses with nationwide poll results.
"Issue by issue, the faculty is so out of touch with the American people," Mr. Luntz said.
The poll of 151 professors and administrators in social science and liberal arts faculties at Ivy League universities had a margin of error of plus or minus 8 percent. The survey found:
While Mr. Gore and Mr. Bush each had 48 percent of the popular vote in the last presidential election, 84 percent of the professors who voted in 2000 picked Mr. Gore more than nine times as many as voted for Mr. Bush.
Asked to name the best president of the past 40 years, the professors named Mr. Clinton as their top choice, at 26 percent. Overall, 71 percent of the professors named a Democrat as their pick for best president, compared with just 8 percent who named a Republican.
Asked their party affiliation, 3 percent of the faculty said they were Republicans and 57 percent said they were Democrats a strong contrast to a recent nationwide survey showing slightly more Americans consider themselves Republicans (37 percent) than Democrats (34 percent).
Forty percent of the professors support slavery reparations for blacks, compared with 11 percent of the general public.
Ivy League faculty strongly oppose (74 percent to 14 percent) a national missile-defense system, while the American public favors such a system by 70 percent to 26 percent.
The professors oppose school vouchers 67 percent to 26 percent, while Americans support vouchers 62 percent to 36 percent.
Mary A. Burgan, general secretary of the American Association of University Professors, questioned the poll's methodology.
"I really worry about a poll like this. That's got to be a very small sample," said Miss Burgan, formerly an English professor at Indiana University.
Only 12 percent of the survey's respondents were professors of business or economics, who she said tend to be more conservative.
"The humanities, from my own experience, tend to be more left than right of center, but I think that most of them are somewhere near the center," she said.
But Mr. Horowitz, a former radical turned conservative activist, said the poll shows "that our universities are less intellectually free than they were even in the McCarthy era, when I was an Ivy League undergraduate myself."
"Students are being shortchanged," said Dan Flynn of Accuracy in Academia, a conservative watchdog organization. "They pay $30,000 a year for an education, but are exposed to only a small range of political and cultural opinion."
Thor Halvorssen, executive director of the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education, said the poll shows that while universities "are enamored of the notion of diversity they really don't believe in the most important diversity, which is diversity of opinion."

Copyright © 2019 The Washington Times, LLC. Click here for reprint permission.

The Washington Times Comment Policy

The Washington Times welcomes your comments on Spot.im, our third-party provider. Please read our Comment Policy before commenting.


Click to Read More and View Comments

Click to Hide