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Dynata Survey Tracks Thanksgiving Day Discussions, Dinner Choices and Traditions for 2019

November 25, 2019 GMT
Dynata Logo (PRNewsfoto/Dynata)
Dynata Logo (PRNewsfoto/Dynata)

DALLAS, Nov. 25, 2019 /PRNewswire/ -- While party lines might be dividing us in other parts of our lives, there is one thing Republican, Democrat and Independent voters can agree on: In today’s charged political environment, politics will be on their Thanksgiving tables. This – and other findings related to how voters feel about the annual “Turkey Day” – come from an exclusive survey by Dynata, the world’s leading provider of fully-permissioned first-party data.

The survey, conducted from Nov. 14-20, polled more than 2,000 Americans on their plans for Thanksgiving Day this year, asking about dinner table conversation topics, their food preferences, and whether some traditions are changing. The results reveal that Thanksgiving remains the one holiday where most of us still come together, but that that the turkey itself might be where we think differently.

Politics Is on The Table
When asked whether they would engage in a political discussion during their Thanksgiving meal, 44 percent said they would jump in, with Democrats and Republicans scoring evenly at 48 percent, and Independents less likely at 40 percent A quarter of those interviewed (26 percent) said they would initiate a political discussion, while more than half (54 percent) said they are unlikely to bring up politics. Democrats (31 percent) and Republicans (30 percent) are just as likely to bring up politics at the table, while Independents are less likely to do so (19 percent).

“I Don’t Want to Talk About It”
Given a selection of topics they would least like to discuss at Thanksgiving dinner (political views, romantic relationships, financial health, and their weight), political views score highest, followed by prior family issues and your weight. Taboo topics differ by political party, however:

- Republicans would most like to avoid discussing family issues (25 percent), followed by political views (23 percent) and their financial health (19 percent)
- For some Democrats, political views (25 percent), and prior family issues (25 percent) are equally taboo, with financial health (18 percent) as the next “stay away”
- Independents score highest for avoiding political view discussions (27 percent), followed by family issues (23 percent) and their romantic relationships (20 percent)

What to Eat When Talking Turkey
As for what’s on the table, white and dark meat are equally favored, with at least half of all Democrats (53 percent), Republicans (52 percent) and Independents (50 percent) all saying they prefer white over dark meat. Twenty-three percent like both and the same percentage (23 percent) prefer dark meat, with virtually no differences by political affiliation. As for the turkey’s trimmings, cranberry sauce preferences reveal that the canned variety is overall more popular than homemade (38 percent to 30 percent), though almost as many don’t eat cranberry sauce at all (29 percent), led by Independents (34 percent).

Favorite Pie for Dessert? Hint: It’s NOT Lemon Meringue
And when it comes to dessert, pumpkin pie is the king of the table, with 36 percent of people choosing it as their favorite pie, especially among Republicans – 40 percent versus 35 percent for Democrats and Independents. Apple (20 percent overall) and pecan pie (19 percent overall) come in second and third, respectively; sadly, lemon meringue pie remains an unloved choice (just 6 percent) for Thanksgiving dessert, with the same percentage saying, “I don’t eat pie”.

Some Traditions Remain
More than two-thirds of Americans (68 percent) will leave their televisions on for Thanksgiving. Pro football is the most watched programming at 59 percent; 30 percent tune into a parade; and 24 percent put on a movie. Roasting remains the overwhelming method of choice for cooking the turkey, with 66 percent choosing that as their preferred technique. Smoking or deep frying the turkey are tied for second at seven percent; interestingly, nearly twice as many Republicans (11 percent) as Democrats (6 percent) or Independents (5 percent) will smoke their turkey.

Others Are Changing
Three times as many Democrats as Republicans won’t have a turkey at all (6 percent vs. 2 percent), with even more Independents (7 percent) choosing a “turkey-free” day. And, as for the new-ish custom of “Black Friday” starting on Thanksgiving day or night, it seems to be a less popular choice, as only 27 percent of folks plan to go out shopping that day. Both Republicans and Democrats agree (58 percent for both) that staying home is the right choice – the deals can wait.

About this study
2,042 completed surveys were conducted online from Nov. 14-20 among Dynata’s online panel.

About Dynata
Dynata is the world’s largest first-party data and insights platform. With a reach that encompasses 60+ million consumers and business professionals globally, and an extensive library of individual profile attributes collected through surveys, Dynata is the cornerstone for precise, trustworthy quality data. The company has built innovative data services and solutions around its robust first-party data offering to bring the voice of the customer to the entire marketing continuum – from strategy, innovation, and branding to advertising, measurement, and optimization. Dynata serves nearly 6,000 market research, media and advertising agencies, publishers, consulting and investment firms and corporate customers in North America, South America, Europe, and Asia-Pacific. Learn more at www.dynata.com.

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