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. Ralph Nalbandian

    The poll is indicative of how effective the right wing disinformation campaign has been. They have been effective in lying to the public about his religion (muslim), political philosophy (communist), and other attributes that would lead to people not liking/not voting for him. BUT, is this (on the whole) good for this country, when our citizens make decisions based on ignorance?

    August 19, 2010 03:50 pm at 3:50 pm |
  2. Gopherit

    This sort of rubbish – allegations that Obama is Muslim – are part of an irresponsible ongoing conspiracy to discredit him and to imply that he somehow is an illegitimate president and even an agent of evil. He was correct in promoting religious freedom as indicated in the Constitution, a fact which is lost upon many who ironically and even ludicrously lampoon him while supposedly advocating that our government should be run according to the Constitution. These accusations essentially are utter hypocrisy. And no, I have many personal reservations about Obama and his administration. But people need to remain fair and objective and not run off half-cocked, especially when what is being purveyed by many narrowly-partisan people in the news media and elsewhere consists of lies.

    August 19, 2010 03:50 pm at 3:50 pm |
  3. DangermanRogers

    Wow, people are freaking dumb.

    August 19, 2010 03:50 pm at 3:50 pm |
  4. Meka

    Anyone in their right mind . . . knows President Obama IS NOT OF MUSLIM FAITH!

    August 19, 2010 03:50 pm at 3:50 pm |
  5. Kay

    There are plenty of real reasons to disagree with Obama, why go around making up stupid stuff like this?

    August 19, 2010 03:51 pm at 3:51 pm |
  6. S. C. C.

    Everyday there is always a complaint. We have all
    forgotten that Pres. Obama had to write a letter to
    his former church because of all the fall out.
    Did we ask any other Pres. if they were Muslim?
    If the Pres. a break.

    The next criticism will be that he took a vacation
    to Martha Vineyard with his family.

    August 19, 2010 03:51 pm at 3:51 pm |
  7. James

    The quran says it is okay to lie in order to further islam.

    August 19, 2010 03:51 pm at 3:51 pm |
  8. Mathew

    And if Obama is a Muslim, what difference would it make?

    This is 2010...I would like to think that we, as a society, have progressed to the point to judge a person's ability by his/her talent and hard work rather than their religion or the colour of their skin.

    August 19, 2010 03:52 pm at 3:52 pm |
  9. Bill from GA

    Further evidence of the right-wing nutjob propaganda machine. No one really knows what one's true beliefs are, so you can only take their word for it. Or you can believe the right-wing nutjob propaganda machine.

    Maybe President Obama should attack some country, unprovoked, or have some people tortured, to show his true Christian beliefs. Worked for W.

    August 19, 2010 03:52 pm at 3:52 pm |
  10. bgl

    And this is an issue, why? I don't care if he is Muslim, Hindu, Jewish, whatever, as long as he keeps it separate from the administration of this country, it should not matter.

    August 19, 2010 03:53 pm at 3:53 pm |
  11. Alan

    I'm sorry but is there a reason that:

    A. this should even REMOTELY matter?
    B. our news is cluttered up with irrelevant drivel like whether or not right-wingnuts believe that our President is a muslim, born in America or anything else that does nothing but show them to be the "morans" they are?

    August 19, 2010 03:53 pm at 3:53 pm |
  12. Orlando Patriot

    A committed Christian?!?! Are you serious!?!? He did not recognize the "National Day of Prayer", thumbed his nose at the Boy Scout celebration, and tells the world we "are not a Christian Nation"!?!?!

    In addition he does not support Israel and the bible in Genesis 12:3 states "And I will bless them that bless thee and curse him that curseth thee; and in thee shall all nations of the earth be blessed." As the minister John Hagee is quoted as saying "God has promised to bless the man or nation that blesses the Chosen People. History has proven beyond reasonable doubt that the nations that have blessed the Jewish people have had the blessing of God; the nations that have cursed the Jewish people have experienced the curse of God."

    This president is DEFINITELY not a Christian!! Whether he is Muslim or not most of us won't every really know but he is so far AGAINST Christianity any rational person would see this.

    August 19, 2010 03:53 pm at 3:53 pm |
  13. dick

    more proof that amerikkka is full of ignorant jerkoffs – like any more proof was needed.

    August 19, 2010 03:53 pm at 3:53 pm |
  14. ABM

    Once again the intelligence of the citizens of this country shocks me. Our President is a Christian. Nothing new and nothing has changed.

    Just because he supports the rights of a particular group does not mean he magically changed his faith or belief. He is defending and affirming our rights – plain and simple.

    Give me a break folks... we "Americans" can be so much better.

    August 19, 2010 03:53 pm at 3:53 pm |
  15. blindbear

    Don't forget the important statistic. 6 out of 10 respondents believe the world is flat and 7 out of 10 believe Republicans are knuckle-dragging cretins who can't read and get all their news from Rush Limbaugh.

    August 19, 2010 03:54 pm at 3:54 pm |
  16. jean

    Yeah, he's a Christian, he's just pandering to the Muslims.

    August 19, 2010 03:54 pm at 3:54 pm |
  17. bertina

    If you, like those supposed one in ten or one in five, believe Obama is a Muslim, then you would believe this poll.

    August 19, 2010 03:54 pm at 3:54 pm |
  18. bennie new york

    What an amazing country we live in when the president has to deny he's a Muslim.

    August 19, 2010 03:54 pm at 3:54 pm |
  19. JAW

    Americans are stupid. i know. i are one.

    August 19, 2010 03:54 pm at 3:54 pm |
  20. Don Lee

    I find religion such a personal issue, and the public's attack on Obama thru its attack on Islam (and vice-versa) so disgusting, it turns my stomach every time I see one of these stories. I don't care if he's Buddhist, Unitarian, or anything else. IT'S NOBODY'S DAMNED BUSINESS.

    August 19, 2010 03:55 pm at 3:55 pm |
  21. Jennifer

    I believe Colin Powell said it best when he stated in an interview that the response to accusations that Barack Obama is Muslim should be "So what if he is?"

    Last time I checked, there was no constitutional requirement that the President be a Christian.

    August 19, 2010 03:55 pm at 3:55 pm |
  22. John E

    Just because he said the correct thing now people are saying he is a muslim. That is crazy and dump. I can see this country going down if the dont quickly go back to thier core values. me personally the Muslim has the right to build anywhere the like if the abide by the city law, but it might not neccessasily be good thing. The that right can not be taken away from them. This is very important.

    August 19, 2010 03:55 pm at 3:55 pm |
  23. jdnremt

    What kind of Christian swears in on the Koran? Im guessing thats more of a muslim thing. Everything Osama does points to his Muslim roots. Muslim upbringing, muslim quotes, muslim support...Who was the very first interview granted and given to after his election as president? If memory serves me correctly, it was directed to muslims and islam. Nothing he does tells me anything other than, Obama IS a Muslim!!!

    August 19, 2010 03:55 pm at 3:55 pm |
  24. Patrick

    President Obama is playing us for suckers. Not only is Obama a muslim, he may also be an Iman. I think he has been lying the whole time about his faith. He is a muslim through and through!

    August 19, 2010 03:55 pm at 3:55 pm |
  25. will h.

    This is probably the same 1 in 5 that believe Adam and Eve lived among dinosaurs.

    August 19, 2010 03:55 pm at 3:55 pm |
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