Don Lemon is about to get triggered. According to the 2018 General Social Survey (GSS), Trump supporters scored higher on verbal ability tests and science knowledge. As Jim Lindgren at Reason notes, the GSS “is usually regarded as the leading omnibus academic survey in the US; it usually achieves response rates about 10 to 20 times higher than the typical public opinion poll.”
On the verbal ability test (WORDSUM), not surprisingly the median number of vocabulary questions correct was the same for both Clinton and Trump supporters: 6 out of 10 words correct. The mean verbal ability score for Trump supporters was 6.15 words correct, while the mean verbal ability score for Clinton supporters was 5.69 correct, a difference of nearly a half a question on a 10-question test. This moderate difference is statistically significant at p<.0005.
Further, Trump supporters score significantly higher on verbal ability (6.15 correct) than the rest of the public combined (5.70 correct), whereas Clinton supporters score significantly lower on verbal ability (5.69 correct) than the rest of the public combined (5.98 correct).
This is actually not a surprising conclusion. Conservative Republicans have consistently scored significantly higher than the rest of the public combined on the 22 General Social Surveys using the verbal ability scale since 1974.
Trump supporters also have greater science knowledge than voters who supported Clinton in 2016. According to the survey, “on six questions Trump supporters offer the correct answer significantly more often than Clinton supporters.”
But here’s where things get interesting.
Indeed, less than half of 2016 Clinton supporters (49.6%) are able to answer correctly both of two related questions: whether the earth goes around the sun or the sun goes around the earth (EARTHSUN) and whether that takes a day, a month, or a year (SOLARREV). Remember these two questions are multiple choice! You would have a 50-50 chance of guessing correctly on the first part: whether the earth goes around the sun or vice versa. Sadly, the general public didn’t do hugely better than Clinton supporters, with only 57.1% (compared to 49.6%) knowing that the earth goes around the sun and that it takes a year to do so.
So, if you don’t know whether the Earth goes around the sun or how long it takes, you might be a
Lindgren concluded, “In short, Don Lemon is a bigot—and like most bigots, he’s an ignorant one as well.”
I can only imagine just how much smarter Trump supporters are than the lemmings who support Bernie Sanders.