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While searching for on-line coupons to help pay for breakfast, we stumbled upon the following from The Wall Street Journal.  I think it says more about the age of a person than it does about political affiliation, but what do I know?

Liberals eat here, Conservatives eat here…

Can you tell a person’s politics based on where they buy their groceries or hamburger?

In their front page story Thursday about how demographic shifts in suburbs are changing the politics of America, the Journal’s Elizabeth Williamson and Dante Chinni write about how the arrival of restaurants like P.F. Chang’s and Chipotle are telltale signs that conservative exurbs are turning liberal.

Experian Marketing Services does a rolling survey of thousands of people who patronize restaurants and retail establishments to determine, among other things, the politics of stores’ customers.

The survey assigns liberal and conservative scores to different establishments based on their customers’ political preferences. A 100 is average, a 120 is 20% more liberal or conservative than average, 80 is 20% less than average, and so on. Some places, likeBurger King , have liberal and conservative indexes that are both below average because they attract more independents.

There are clearly regional biases here. The supermarket chain Harris Teeter scores 113 on the conservative index, probably because its stores are predominately located in the Southeast. Oregon-based supermarket Fred Meyer, which is owned by Kroger and has stores in the Pacific Northwest, scores 154 on the liberal index.

Among fast-food establishments, the most liberal customers eat at Au Bon Pain. The most conservative: Krystal, Schlotsky’s Deli and Whataburger.

Chain restaurants that score the highest on the conservative index are O’Charley’s and Cracker Barrel. The most liberal: California Pizza Kitchen.

And the supermarket with the most conservative customers is Houston-based Randall’s. There’s no surprise that the most liberal shop at Whole Foods and Trader Joe’s.

Here are three sortable charts showing how liberal or conservative customers are at America’s chain restaurants, fast-food establishments and supermarkets, based on Experian Marketing Services’s gauge:


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