August 19th, 2010
02:26 PM ET
12 years ago

White House strikes back at 'Muslim' tag

[cnn-photo-caption image= caption =" The White House on Thursday responded to new polls which indicate Americans do not know what religion President Obama practices."]Vineyard Haven, Massachusetts (CNN) - The White House is responding to new polls Thursday that show an increasing number of Americans believe that President Obama is a Muslim.

"President Obama is a committed Christian, and his faith is an important part of his daily life," Deputy White House Communications Director Jen Psaki told CNN. "He prays every day, he seeks a small circle of Christian pastors to give him spiritual advice and counseling, he even receives a daily devotional that he uses each morning. The President's Christian faith is a part of who he is, but not a part of what the public or the media is focused on everyday."

Psaki added that "the President's strong Christian faith is what guides him through the challenges – a recovering economy, bringing troops home from Iraq, putting healthcare and financial reform implementation in place - but he doesn't wear it on his sleeve."

According to a poll conducted by the Pew Forum on Religion and Public Life released Thursday, nearly one in five Americans believe Obama is a Muslim, up from around one in 10 Americans who said he was Muslim last year.

While most of those who think Obama is Muslim are Republicans, the number of independents who believe he is Muslim has expanded significantly, from 10 percent last year to 18 percent now.

The number of Americans who express uncertainly about the president's religion, meanwhile, is much larger and has also grown, including among Obama's political base. For instance, fewer than half of Democrats and African-Americans now say that Obama is Christian according to the Pew poll.

Filed under: Popular Posts • President Obama • Religion
soundoff (286 Responses)
  1. Neal

    Wait, he's not a muslim? Sure he is. What is this confusion all about?

    August 19, 2010 03:55 pm at 3:55 pm |
  2. JSRagman

    Once again the ignorance of the American public is appalling but not surprising. It is no wonder that other industrialized countries are passing us by. When we have clowns like Gov Perry in Texas turning down government money that is supposed to improve education in his state, because it is part of a Democratic plan, it is no surprise that school districts in Texas and many other states rank near the bottom in the rest of the world. All of this results in uninformed and uneducated boobs. The fact that so many Americans believe that Pres. Obama is Muslim and that he isn't a U.S. citizen (after solid proof has been shown over and over) says it all. Face it, this country is country is going down the tubes because we are a country full of ignorant folks. I find this to be pretty scary.

    August 19, 2010 03:55 pm at 3:55 pm |
  3. B Davis

    They brought it on themselves by trying to have it both ways
    the WH focussed on Obama's background in their so-called outreach (really appeasement) of the Islamic world, pointing out he was born to a Muslem father and attended an Islamic school in Indonesia.

    One of the things we all learned, is that as far as Muslims are concerned, if you are born to a Muslim Father, you are a Muslim. Period. End of Story

    Obama was too cleaver by half, using this when he "reached out" to Muslems, and too stupid for words, when he thought the US people would not get the message as well

    August 19, 2010 03:56 pm at 3:56 pm |
  4. bobcat1a

    20% of the American people don't know which way is up. Remember the recent poll that showed 24% thought we gained our independence from some country other than Great Britain.

    August 19, 2010 03:56 pm at 3:56 pm |
  5. cath

    And by the way, why would be so wrong if he was Muslim?!?!

    August 19, 2010 03:57 pm at 3:57 pm |
  6. ken

    I think we have heard this before. Lets think back:

    Read my lips, no new taxes
    I did not have s!x with that women
    I am not a crook

    Of course, the guy in office today makes the rest of them look like amatures.

    The real question is why do we keep electing liars to the Executive Office and Congress?

    August 19, 2010 03:57 pm at 3:57 pm |
  7. Help me understand...

    I am a Christian. And so is our President. But what if he wasn't? What difference does that make? Does our Constitution make Christianity a prerequisite for holding that office? Answers: None, None, and No. Now let's move on to something substantive.

    August 19, 2010 03:58 pm at 3:58 pm |
  8. Wendy

    This should be no news to anyone aware of the ratings. Because Fix News has the lion's share of the prime time listening audience, Fix News has the lion's share of people gulping down the coolaide. Got to hand it to them, their strategy is a winner: Gather the ignorant and the intolerant, keep them ignorant and intolerant, then feed them a healthy dose of hate daily and you get what we've got – a country that's in the crapper.

    August 19, 2010 03:59 pm at 3:59 pm |
  9. Josh

    It's unfortunate that CNN has joined FIX NEWS to go after this President, a man who inherited the worse set of circunstances than any of his predecessors, a man who has only gotten not just NO, but HELL NO from a very obstructionist Right Wing Opposition. I see no contradiction in what the President said on Friday and what he said on Saturday evening but, CNN being afraid that FIX NEWS will characterize them as bias and liberal has decided to pile. Just think about the accomplishments in less than two years.
    American who think our President is a Muslim has done so because media houses like CNN have failed to in their responsibility to educate and inform. AND WHAT IF HE WAS A MUSLIM? HOW ABOUT ALL THE MUSLIM BURRIED AT ARLINGTON, WHO DIED FIGHTINNG FOR THIS GREAT NATION? Something Cheney or Bush never did.
    Shame on CNN.

    August 19, 2010 03:59 pm at 3:59 pm |
  10. chicagoK

    People think Obama is a Muslim because he treats America like Muslims do. He's always bashing the US and apologizing for the US saving country after country from natural disasters. Obama acts like the domestic terrorist he is. That's why people think he's a terrorist! He is!

    August 19, 2010 03:59 pm at 3:59 pm |
  11. Dennis

    This just in at Fox News, President Obama secretly worships Jesus.

    August 19, 2010 04:00 pm at 4:00 pm |
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