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The Democratic Strategist

Political Strategy for a Permanent Democratic Majority

Obama the Muslim and his Christian Preacher

One of the things you heard a lot from Obama supporters over the last couple of weeks was the rueful observation that the Jeremiah Wright controversy would at least greatly reduce the whisper-campaign-fed perception that he’s a Muslim. Not so, says a new Pew poll.

There is little evidence that the recent news about Obama’s affiliation with the United Church of Christ has dispelled the impression that he is Muslim. While voters who heard “a lot” about Reverend Wright’s controversial sermons are more likely than those who have not to correctly identify Obama as a Christian, they are not substantially less likely to still believe that he is Muslim. Nearly one-in-ten (9%) of those who heard a lot about Wright still believe that Obama is Muslim.

The percentage of Americans believing Obama’s a Muslim ranges from 14% among Republicans, to 10% among Democrats, to 8% among independents. At the risk of repeating one of those misleading triple-loaded poll findings, 23% of white Democrats with an unfavorable opinion of Obama think he’s a Muslim.
Moreover, a third of poll respondents–and a third of Democrats–say they don’t know what religion Barack Obama observes.
Otherwise, the Pew poll has a lot of welcome findings for Obama, showing a positive reaction to his “race speech,” and leads over HRC and McCain roughly the same as they found a month ago. But it’s beginning to become obvious that the “Obama is a Muslim” thing has become one of those ineradicable myths that evidence to the contrary can’t shake.

3 comments on “Obama the Muslim and his Christian Preacher

  1. MadamMijanou on

    The strangest and most confusing thing about this Obama is a Muslim – is coming from fellow black people here on Long Island. Whenever I try to correct my fellow workers, I am winked at, laughed at, all as if I really don’t have a clue to what is going on. When my correction comes that he is a Christian, I get a “yeah right”. “he is a Muslim”. It seems that the black people here on long island ( I cannot speak for the rest of the country) are continuing this Myth?, for the purpose of bringing those people of the black race who prefer him to be muslim into the fold. Once the rumors started that he was a muslim, the money coming into his campaigne quadrupled, and he no longer had to prove if he was black enough. So I am a very confused white woman right now. One thing I was told, is that he is Farrakhans neighbor and they are tighter than anyone knows. Why hasn’t the media picked up on this?

  2. cygnus on

    The Wright mess isn’t going away. Obama knows it. Why else would he go on The View on a Friday and attempt to further distance himself from his pastor? He should have ditched the guy last year. This isn’t something you can talk your way out of. (I don’t think the Obama campaign considered the video impact of Wright’s rants.)

  3. DC1974 on

    Well, just a sweep of the tabloids at check out at the grocery, they’ve been screaming about Obama is a Muslim for weeks now. Thinking thats probably where more than few people get their news, I wouldn’t be surprised if they are helping to fuel the rumors.


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