August 19th, 2010
02:26 PM ET
11 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. Glenn Koons

    CNN and the entire JOURNOLIST liberals always try to defend this wascal in the WH. LOL But, it is now silly. Strikes back??? Oh puleeze. Obama , if a Christian, must be in the strain of the Wright-Soros-Wallis type. If so, ....uh, not much of an impact there except in politics. Not exactly standing up for Christ. And if he were a Muslim, fine if he was not a sharia-compliant, jihadist, madrasses type. So I can have it both ways since the MSM never vetted this inept CEO who is simply a socialist community organizer from an Alinsky, not a Christian background. And please tell us where his church is now??? Wallis' living room???? Puleeze.

    August 19, 2010 02:34 pm at 2:34 pm |
  2. Limbaugh is a liberal

    Yes, and I'm sure Rev. Wright, his pastor that republicans like to bring up over and over was also a secret muslim.

    August 19, 2010 02:35 pm at 2:35 pm |
  3. Horace

    What difference does his religion, or lack thereof, make? He's a committed Socialist, an ideologue and out of touch with mainstream America. That's what matters.

    August 19, 2010 02:35 pm at 2:35 pm |
  4. Reality Bites

    Get a life people!

    August 19, 2010 02:35 pm at 2:35 pm |
  5. The Choobs

    Doesn't matter what the WH says; tthe ignorant and racist and fearful will still believe the B.S. they want to believe. And THAT is way scarier to me than a supposedly Muslim President!

    August 19, 2010 02:35 pm at 2:35 pm |
  6. Wisdom

    They're saying Muslim because they figured out that they sound like inbred redneck racists when they use the N-word.

    August 19, 2010 02:35 pm at 2:35 pm |
  7. Peter E

    And what if he was a muslim? We have freedom of religion in this country, don't we? Or I guess that only applies to mainstream protestant Chritians...

    August 19, 2010 02:36 pm at 2:36 pm |
  8. gt

    if it talks like a duck and quacks like a duck, and flies like a duck.... yea he may be a muslim....

    August 19, 2010 02:36 pm at 2:36 pm |
  9. bill

    well said about our president.never have i seen so much hatred against our president.where was the truth and hatred.when bush invaded iraq.ON A OUT RIGHT LIE. COME ON PEOPLE THIS IS OUR AMERICA.LETS STAND UP FOR HARDEST WORKING.PRESIDENT IN HISTORY. STOP HATRED NOW.

    August 19, 2010 02:37 pm at 2:37 pm |
  10. AJ

    Its pathetic that this president felt it necessary to put his religion on his sleve. Why didnt he just say that matters of faith are of a personal nature and leave it at that. Pandering to the religious nuts that won't vote for him anyway is just stupid and makes him look weak and defensive.

    August 19, 2010 02:38 pm at 2:38 pm |
  11. Mesa Mick

    These staments won't help much. Those die-hard, good christian conservatives living in the trailer parks in Krackerville, USA will ALWAYS think he's a commie, socialist, nazi, Kenyan Musim.

    These unibrow, mouth breathin', knuckle draggin',gun toten', bible bangin' lizard brains can't help themselves, they are re-thug-lie-cants...

    August 19, 2010 02:38 pm at 2:38 pm |
  12. Bob A. from Buffalo

    CNN, change your headline. People only 'strike back' when someone attacks them, and being mistaken about someone's faith is not an attack. How about 'White House responds to Muslim misconception?' It's not like anyone's accusing him of a crime, for goodness sake.

    August 19, 2010 02:38 pm at 2:38 pm |
  13. Gaylon Barrow FOR THE TRUTH!

    He is one more big fat liar too. All this going to a Christian church is only a guise. Don't be mislead this man has intentions o0f destroying America. Only the unwise would believe otherwise and BROTHERS there are plently of you out there. But thank God there is not enough of you to Overcome. That is why Obama wants to legalize the illegals. PLEASE DON'T CALL THEM IMMIGRANTS. FOR THEY ARE NOT. THEY ARE THIEVES IN THE NIGHT AND STEALING OUR BENEFITS. FOR THIS THEY NEED TO PAY AS ANYONE ELSE WOULD DO WITH YEARS IN THE PEN IF THEY ENTERED MEXICO ILLEGALLY. IF THIS YOU DO NOT BELIEVE JUST GO TRY IT. It alright to be idiots but when it affects others it is a calamity.

    August 19, 2010 02:38 pm at 2:38 pm |
  14. Paul

    Another classic example of Obama playing defense, and giving in to the right wing storyline.

    The correct response would have been to correct the facts, but then to move on to the broader point that America is a place founded on freedom. Freedom of religion, freedom of speech, and freedom from tyranny. We've gotten away from this great tradition, and we need to stop stoking the fires of religious intolerance by questioning our neighbors motives. Judge people on their acts, not on rumors.

    August 19, 2010 02:38 pm at 2:38 pm |
  15. Ron in Califonia

    And what church does he and his family attend?

    August 19, 2010 02:38 pm at 2:38 pm |
  16. independent

    Perhaps an invitation to the Pope might help. No, wait, that's the Pope who just alienated females around the Globe equating their desire to be priests, with pedophilia.

    August 19, 2010 02:39 pm at 2:39 pm |
  17. Dave

    This is the most bigoted discussion ever. Who cares what faith he is but a bigot?

    August 19, 2010 02:41 pm at 2:41 pm |
  18. DJ

    I blame the media!! I mean seriously why post or talk about a stupid poll when you know it is wrong? I mean when this stupid poll came out and was being talked about in the media, not once did I see a commentator say " The man is not a Muslim but a Christian" which only speaks to the media sensationalism that is being sought after every day when it comes to this President. LOOK PEOPLE GET OVER IT!! WE HAVE A FREAKIN PRESIDENT THAT SO HAPPENS TO BE BLACK!! WOW!! can we move on and let the man do his job without all the silly stuff!!

    August 19, 2010 02:41 pm at 2:41 pm |
  19. Mr. Moderate

    Can we finally end this nonsense about Pres Bush being treated just as poorly by the left? He never had to put up with this level of slander.

    For all of you leaning on the crutch about the Bush assisination movie, it was an obscure film shown at a Canadian film festival that never was screened in this country. Bush had an 80% aproval rating after his first year in office despite more than half the country voting against him meaning that he was at least given a chance. The nastiness directed at him that so many like to cite only started after he launched an unprovoked war against a country that did nothing to us.

    August 19, 2010 02:41 pm at 2:41 pm |
  20. John in Sacramento

    I disagree; I don't think he is Muslim or Christian. If I were a betting man, I would say he is closer to an Agnostic or Atheist.

    August 19, 2010 02:41 pm at 2:41 pm |
  21. Expat American

    The President is a Christian; but for argument’s sake, why would it matter if the President were Muslim?

    Why does there exist so many bigoted, hateful, bigoted Christian Patriots who hide behind their American bastardization of European Christianity while wrapping themselves up in their gigantic car dealership flags? These 1 in 5 Republicans truly lack education, global perspective and simple common sense.

    I’d vote for an educated Muslim American over an uneducated white trailer trash Christ Nazi Tea Party Patriot (Palin) any day.

    God Bless America, where you can drive for 3,000 miles and end up pretty much in the same place.

    August 19, 2010 02:42 pm at 2:42 pm |
  22. Julia- Idaho Native American

    United States of Aryan Nations, Most Racist country in the world,
    it's not what his religion is, it's because he is African American, racism is alive and spreading like a veneral disease in the good ole' USA.

    August 19, 2010 02:42 pm at 2:42 pm |
  23. Eric

    "President Obama is a committed Christian," said a spokesman for the Indonesian who bowed to the Saudi King.

    Look, you can talk and spin all you want, but actions ALWAYS speak louder than words. I'm a conservative atheist (yes, there actually IS such a thing), and I refuse to bow to any man, whether King or president.

    Man up and grow a pair, Barry.

    August 19, 2010 02:43 pm at 2:43 pm |
  24. hillcrester

    Jesus, such nonsense from a hateful public. Has Obama EVER worshipped at a mosque? Doesn't he attend a Christian (apparently the "right" religion of the right) church? The birthers, the anti-Muslims, the "government help is sicialism," and other critics run amok have so fouled the air in this country that it is a disgrace.

    August 19, 2010 02:43 pm at 2:43 pm |
  25. Tom from Ohio

    Its crazy that they are even responding to the retarded 20% that will always think W. was the best president in history.

    August 19, 2010 02:44 pm at 2:44 pm |
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