- The Washington Times - Friday, June 11, 2021

Buddy, pal, chum — what is the state of friendship among the political parties?

One particular political persuasion appears to be more tolerant than others when it comes to cultivating simple friendships, and navigating political differences at the same time, according to an unusual new survey by the Survey Center on American Life, a project of the American Enterprise Institute, a public policy think tank.

“Importantly, Republicans have more bipartisan friendships than Democrats do. A majority (53%) of Republicans say they have at least some friends who are Democrats. In contrast, less than one-third (32%) of Democrats say they have at least some Republican friends,” the survey analysis said.

Among all Americans, a mere 15% have ended a friendship over political beliefs, the findings show. That sense of tolerance does not appear to apply to everyone, however.

“Ending friendships over political disagreements occurs more among liberal and Democratic-leaning Americans. Democrats are twice as likely as Republicans are to report having ended a friendship over a political disagreement (20% vs. 10%),” the analysis noted.

“Political liberals are also far more likely than conservatives are to say they are no longer friends with someone due to political differences (28% vs. 10%, respectively). No group is more likely to end a friendship over politics than liberal women are; 33% say they stopped being friends with someone because of their politics,” the research noted.

The wide-ranging poll of 2,019 U.S. adults was conducted May 14-23 and released Tuesday.

• Jennifer Harper can be reached at jharper@washingtontimes.com.

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