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. Greg

    My goodness....I am so glad that we have a black president. (ok mixed race)

    It brings out the racist spook mongering in right into the open so that its in your face all the time, which is good. The United States needs this rude awakening.

    Let's see: Obama is a terrorist, A racist, A muslim, not an American, born in Kenya, born in Indonesia and wants to destroy this country.

    Lets call it what it is.... Its a certain percentage of our population that hates a black man in control of this country. Period!

    The folks prove that there will always be stupid and we will never get rid of it....

    August 19, 2010 03:10 pm at 3:10 pm |
  2. Allen in Hartwell GA

    A lot of good ole American boys and girls will admit to believing anything about the president except what they really feel. I grew up in the South in the 1960s and recognize bigotry when I see it, and I really thought the nation was beyond what I see today.

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

    okay seriously if he were white this wouldn't be an issue

    August 19, 2010 03:11 pm at 3:11 pm |
  4. Peter s

    That was the intention of whoever came with the idea of building the mosque at ground zero! to brand President Obama as a muslim!. If we dig deeper in this controversy you might find a hand Saudi's Sheik!! through fix news. Time to investigate more about this! why bring it up when the November election s are around the corner ?Well to all agents of the devil! President Obama is a christian and you can't steal that from him!

    August 19, 2010 03:12 pm at 3:12 pm |
  5. AEJ

    Yes, being a black man – worse being a black president – you are certainly NOT one of them, i.e. white.

    Not to worry Mr. president, they too shall pass and the more pathetic thing is that they profess Jesus Christ is Lord. A true bunch of hyprocrites.

    August 19, 2010 03:12 pm at 3:12 pm |
  6. Mark

    Dear POTUS,

    Pay no heed to those too ignorant to understand truth & reality! lol Facts usually conflict with their ideals, & an African American in the White House doesn't swallow well for them.

    Hopefully they'll devolve over time from the Human race.

    August 19, 2010 03:12 pm at 3:12 pm |
  7. Rosslaw

    One in five Americans do not know that the world is round, over 6,000 years old and that juggling rattlesnakes during religious ceremonies can be hazardous to your health.

    August 19, 2010 03:13 pm at 3:13 pm |
  8. Emilio Dumphuque

    ...and that's why we see so many pictures of him bowing toward Mecca five times a day.

    August 19, 2010 03:13 pm at 3:13 pm |
  9. hypocricnnation

    This Is For The Past 7 Months The Way The Media Plays The Game (Operates). Some Hack Pollster Comes Out And Does A Poll, Never Reveal Who Or Where The Poll Was Done. The Poll Never Reveals The Actual Number Of People Polled (Unless Pressed To Reveal), And The President Or Whomever's In The Line Of Fire Has To Waste Time From Other Matters (Like The Economy) And Defend Himself (Or Themselves).

    August 19, 2010 03:13 pm at 3:13 pm |
  10. Gregory

    Anyone who believes the President is a Muslim is simply prejudice and can’t stand the fact that we have a black man in the White house. They can’t. They are like the birthers or are the birthers. You people are the new hatred, the new divided that is tearing the country apart. It’s unfortunate that our media is so weak, that they give you people a medium to spread your hate instead of calling you people what you really are……..Bigots. The same old bigots in a different clothing……

    August 19, 2010 03:13 pm at 3:13 pm |
  11. Dennis

    I don't believe he's Muslim or Christian. He's an egotheist. He doesn't think anyone or anything is bigger or more important than himself.

    August 19, 2010 03:13 pm at 3:13 pm |

    Kick out of musilim cause musilims are keep with plot terroist

    August 19, 2010 03:14 pm at 3:14 pm |
  13. Michael

    People hate Obama so much that they're willing to believe that he wasn't born in this country and he's a Muslim. Those are the same people that believe Elvis is alive and living in South America. They need to keep sitting on their front porches polishing their double barrel shotgun and keep waiting for those pinko commie bastards to show up at their fron door. Oh hey look, cheese from the moon!

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

    Freedom of religion=everyone, including the President, is entitled to practice whatever, or no, faith they desire. It is NONE of our business.

    August 19, 2010 03:14 pm at 3:14 pm |
  15. Informed

    Who cares what his religion is? Really, does it matter? If it does please re-read the constitution.

    August 19, 2010 03:14 pm at 3:14 pm |
  16. rosec

    Give it a rest the man is a Christian!! We have bigger things to worry about. Some people are always trying to find issue with the President so now they take a shot at his religion, these people need to get a life!!!

    August 19, 2010 03:15 pm at 3:15 pm |
  17. Karl in Charleston,SC

    We've seen the Pastors he associates with and we've seen his registration as a Muslim, Barry Soto, at a Madras. When does he proport to have become a Christian?

    August 19, 2010 03:15 pm at 3:15 pm |
  18. cjr

    americans who believe that Obama is muslin or that the mosque near the 9-11 event will destroy american need to go back to 4th grade – obvously they have not grown up and can only act like sheep. never read anything, never listen to the news. apparently no one ever encouraged them to think for themselves. it;'s scary because most of these adult children have children of their own and they will be as unaware as their parents! with a population like that we don't have a chance.

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

    Of course, President Obama is a christian. Thanks to all the people that are not christians, they just pretend to be or they would not spread the lies that they have about our President. I can't listen to the Becks, Palin,etc. anymore. I can't get down to their level.

    August 19, 2010 03:15 pm at 3:15 pm |
  20. Doles

    Obviously the President and his advisors cannot say.....but I can.
    Mr. President, you knew exactly what you were getting yourself into. It's one of the reasons I will continue to pray for ya. Opening the door in any place is never easy. We all know you were the Jackie Robinson of American politics. Hey, receive the shots. You did it for a good number. One day you'll be revered even more than Martin Luther King. What you did was nothing than marvelous. You know you're not Muslim (not that there's nothing wrong with that)... and those who are praying for you know fully well you're not. God Bless you!

    August 19, 2010 03:15 pm at 3:15 pm |
  21. New Yorker

    Who cares if 18% of Americans think he is a Muslim. More than 18% of Americans elected and re-elected Bush. More than 18% of Americans picked Obama over Hillary. More than 18% of Americans think that ObamaCare is good for the country. More than 18% of Americans think the economy is on a good track. Clearly 18% of Americans have consistently been wrong before. The 18% we should be focused on are those that are unemployed and not fully employed. Personally, I don't care what religion they are. I do care that they are out of work and under utilized. Lets get America working again!

    August 19, 2010 03:15 pm at 3:15 pm |
  22. Rusty

    Wow! A year later and the country gets even more stupid...great trend!

    August 19, 2010 03:16 pm at 3:16 pm |
  23. Michael

    Rather than say "i'm a Christian, not a Muslim, although there is nothing wrong with one being a Muslim," he runs away from the "Muslim" label as if he is being accused of being a man who eats babies for breakfast and pushes old ladies into traffic. I have been a democrat a long time and fully supported President, not a Muslim, Obama. However, for the first time, I'm tempted to support Republicans... at least they proudly and openly express their anti-minority, anti-individual, pro-rich white man views. Obama has become a hypocrite, say anything that fits with the polls of the day. Absolutely pathetic!

    August 19, 2010 03:16 pm at 3:16 pm |
  24. BigGrant

    The cost of this trip $2M to the US Taxpayer. Nice.

    August 19, 2010 03:17 pm at 3:17 pm |
  25. tess

    funny how the liberal media made fun of bush's religion and now that we have a president who obviously doesn't practice much religion (how many times have the first family gone to church since living in the white house!) they are begging for him to show religious activities!?! what is missing is o'bamas true belief – how can he practice something he clearly doesn't believe in – it's a delicate balancing act isn't it o'bama?

    August 19, 2010 03:18 pm at 3:18 pm |
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