Poll: Americans Want A Faithful President But The Right Faith

A new poll below shows just how wedded the American voters are to faith-based politics. Two-thirds of voters say that it is very important (39%) or somewhat important (28%) for a presidential candidate to have strong religious beliefs. However, it has to be the right religion. Forty-three percent admitted that they would be uncomfortable with a Mormon in the White House. The numbers are even greater in opposition to a Muslim (64%). However, it is an atheist that draws the most universal opposition. Sixty-seven percent say they would not want an atheist in the White House. It would indicate that the attacks on atheists (and here) in this country and abroad may be resonating with voters and that faith-based politics remains good politics for candidates.

There are some interesting details like that fact that Democratic voters are more opposed to a Mormon president than Republicans. Fifth percent of Democratic voters (50%) express discomfort on the issue over Republican voters (36%) or Independent voters (38%). What is also interesting is that younger voters are less comfortable than older voters.

The news is not good for Obama either. The number of people unhappy with Obama has not significantly changed with 45% approve and 44% disapprove. However, a majority (54%) of white Americans disapprove of how Obama is handling his job as president. Yet, 88% of African Americans approve of his performance. The poll suggests that people like Obama . . . they just don’t like him as president.

It is a study worth browsing if you have the time.


Source: American Values

64 thoughts on “Poll: Americans Want A Faithful President But The Right Faith”

  1. I echo the sentiment, Happy veterans day to all who answered the call: whether by choice or force you gave more than many of us, I think, can even imagine. For that, thanks you.

    To me the point of this poll is on point without realizing it – they did not even bother to ask how many would support someone who is Jewish?
    A jewish president? fuggedaboutit. not even worth the question.

  2. To join the chorus, Happy Veterans Day and thank you all for your service.

    Just because many of us don’t appreciate the questionable motives and bad actions of those politicians who send you off does not mean we do not appreciate both your service and your sacrifices. In fact, it is that very appreciation that compels many of us to question the political actions and demand accountability. Duty and honor such as yours should not be ill-used by politicians for profit motives and personal agendas of the wealthy.

    Again, for those who have served, thank you.

    For those currently serving, thank you and may you return home safely.

  3. Violence or the threat of it is the primary natural way to attain freedom once it is denied, because it is the primary natural way to deny freedom to others, and violent criminals can usually only be thwarted by violence in return.

    That is true whether we are talking about individuals or whole populations, and has been true for the 100,000 years we have been going to war and subjugating others, as subjects, slaves, indentured servants, second-class citizens or whatever. It is the threat of violence that prevents people from speaking freely or acting freely; heck even religions resort to the threat of violence to exact compliance: Hell is nothing but a supernatural torture chamber.

    It is possible that freedom can be attained by argument or appeals to sympathy or logic or morality, but arguing that freedom cannot be attained by the oppressed banding together and going to war against those denying them freedom is just patently ridiculous.

  4. Oro,

    “This chapter has presented my main research findings on religious
    ” emphasis mine.

    I get it, you think that religious fundamentalists behave in X fashion. You have even provided evidence for that.

    What you haven’t provided evidence for is that 2/3rds of the American voting public can be described as religious fundamentalists. Unless you can provide some proof that they are, I’m going to keep believing that you unfairly defined a larger group of people (those who say that it is very important (39%) or somewhat important (28%) for a presidential candidate to have strong religious beliefs) as something they’re not (religious fundamentalists).

    I’m not arguing that your description of fundamentalist Christianity as a breeding ground for authoritarianism. In fact, I could probably do a better job than you are arguing that than you are. I’m arguing that you’re confusing a small subset of Christianity with the whole.

  5. Ditto re Rafflaw & Blousie.

    And I am doubly at fault for not paying homage — yesterday was my great privilege to assist a WWII veteran with a minor problem. I needed a copy of his discharge papers. It noted that he had been awarded seven bronze stars.

  6. rafflaw,

    I am deeply ashamed to have not done as you just did … yes

    Happy Veterans Day to all! And Thank You.

  7. Gyges —

    Authoritarians — being the amoral, self-serving opportunists that they are — come in all stripes, from the far-right to the far-left, as do their followers. And as bad as Authoritarian followers are, add fundamentalist religion to the mix, the combination is expotentially worse

    Check out Chapter 4 Authoritarian Followers and Religious Fundamentalism at the following —


    The following is the summary of Chapter 4, found at pages 139-141:

    Summary: So What Does All This Amount To?

    This chapter has presented my main research findings on religious
    fundamentalists. The first thing I want to emphasize, in light of the rest of this book, is that they are highly likely to be authoritarian followers. They are highly submissive to established authority, aggressive in the name of that authority, and conventional to the point of insisting everyone should behave as their authorities decide. They are fearful and self-righteous and have a lot of hostility in them that they readily direct toward various out-groups. They are easily incited, easily led, rather un-inclined to think for themselves, largely impervious to facts and reason, and rely instead on social support to maintain their beliefs. They bring strong loyalty to their in-groups, have thick-walled, highly compartmentalized minds, use a lot of double standards in their judgments, are surprisingly unprincipled at times, and are often hypocrites.

    But they are also Teflon-coated when it comes to guilt. They are blind to
    themselves, ethnocentric and prejudiced, and as closed-minded as they are narrowminded. They can be woefully uninformed about things they oppose, but they prefer ignorance and want to make others become as ignorant as they. They are also surprisingly uninformed about the things they say they believe in, and deep, deep, deep down inside many of them have secret doubts about their core belief. But they are very happy, highly giving, and quite zealous. In fact, they are about the only zealous people around nowadays in North America, which explains a lot of their success in their endless (and necessary) pursuit of converts.

    I want to emphasize also that all of the above is based on studies in which, if the opposite were true instead, that would have been shown. This is not just “somebody’s opinion.” It’s what the fundamentalists themselves said and did. And it adds up to a truly depressing bottom line. Read the two paragraphs above again and consider how much of it would also apply to the people who filled the stadium at the Nuremberg Rallies. I know this comparison will strike some as outrageous, and I’m NOT saying religion turns people into Nazis. But does anybody believe the ardent Nazi followers in Germany, or Mussolini’s faithful in Italy, or Franco’s legions in Spain were a bunch of atheists? Being “religious” does not automatically build a firewall against accepting totalitarianism, and when fundamentalist religions teach authoritarian submission, authoritarian aggression, and conventionalism, they help create the problem. Can we not see how easily religious fundamentalists would lift a would-be dictator aloft as part of a “great movement,” and give it their all?

  8. Oro,

    Wrong group.

    “It’s all about Authoritarians (read:amoral opportunists) and — more dangerously — their 9exploited?) followers. Their whole philosophy of life is to follow. Many follow “God.” The mere existence of an atheist is an existential threat to their philosophy.”

    I know devote Christians that don’t care if I’m an atheist that would still be uncomfortable electing a non-Christian.

    That book is explicitly about the Religious Right. The study found that “two-thirds of voters say that it is very important (39%) or somewhat important (28%) for a presidential candidate to have strong religious beliefs,” and two thirds of voters are NOT the religious right. So it can’t ALL be about the religious right.

  9. Dredd:

    “The nation came into existence, was established, by the Declaration of Independence then the Constitution.”


    I would say under most any accepted definitions, The Declaration of Independence was an “act of war.” Though written and adopted after the first shots were fired it would constitute a casus belli. While the “nation” came into being following the adoption of those founding documents, the notion of indivisible sovereignty of the colonies surely came about through force of arms.

    Nor have We been wanting in attentions to our Brittish brethren. We have warned them from time to time of attempts by their legislature to extend an unwarrantable jurisdiction over us. We have reminded them of the circumstances of our emigration and settlement here. We have appealed to their native justice and magnanimity, and we have conjured them by the ties of our common kindred to disavow these usurpations, which, would inevitably interrupt our connections and correspondence. They too have been deaf to the voice of justice and of consanguinity. We must, therefore, acquiesce in the necessity, which denounces our Separation, and hold them, as we hold the rest of mankind, Enemies in War, in Peace Friends.

    ~The Declaration of Independence

  10. Dredd,

    “BTW your caught the ad hominem bug that is being shared without going anywhere. Shake it, it is not a good gene for you.”

    Not so Dredd, I just think you’re an opportunistic asshole. I get out quite a bit actually, which is how I recognize your methods for what they are: generating traffic to your site for your own reasons. Thanks for explaing to me why HTML was invented.

  11. Blouise 1, November 10, 2011 at 9:47 pm


    “what creates our American freedom? is your discussion … not mine
    My link discusses and mentions Mithraism, as a religion of presidents, soldiers, and emperors.

    It is quite on point, as is the false doctrine in the religion of war that war creates freedom.

  12. gbk 1, November 11, 2011 at 12:05 am


    Dredd treats every JT post as an opportunity to link to his blog. He is indeed a poser.
    That is what HTML was made for. Before that one had to post and entire page into another page.

    It is a way of sharing memes of those not in your immediate family without cluttering up the works, and giving the power to the clicker to decide.

    Tight gene pools make up tight bloggers. Broaden your genes like JT does by linking to other places in every post.

    Getting out more often is said to be a good thing.

    I have zero ads on my blogs and always will have zero ads. Lots of idea genes, no ads.

    BTW your caught the ad hominem bug that is being shared without going anywhere. Shake it, it is not a good gene for you.

  13. gbk,

    May those who love us, love us.
    And those who don’t love us,
    May God turn their hearts;
    And if He doesn’t turn their hearts,
    May He turn their ankles,
    So we will know them by their limping!


  14. gbk,

    I didn’t click on the link he included in his post for exactly that reason.

    Thank you … 🙂

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