According to numbers posted in an article in CBS news.com the nonpartisan Pew Research Center revealed that 18 percent of Americans believe that US President Obama is Muslim. This is a rise up from the original 11 percent who said so in March 2009 as opposed to 34 percent who believed Mr. Obama is Christian, which is down from the 48 percent who said so last year.
In an interview on the NBC Nightly news Obama reiterated that he was Christian and that any confusion relating to his religious beliefs could be blamed on the network of misinformation stressing that in a new media era anything can get churned out there.
The President assured the public he was not concerned about the rumours circulating, the 20% who believe he is Muslim, or to the controversy over his birthplace
During the airing of the TV program Meet the Press
, Republican leader Mitch McConnell commented on the Pew poll which revealed that 31 percent of the Republicans believe Obama is a Muslim
“The president says he’s a Christian. I take him at his word. I don’t think that’s in dispute.”
However reading between the lines a hint of skeptism is noted in the article Why Won’t Any Republicans Condemn the “Obama Is a Muslim” Myth?
” If you only paid attention to his first two sentences, as some pundits did, you might think McConnell was trying to keep doubt alive by suggesting the matter was one of debate. If you were patient enough to listen to the last sentence, you heard him say that the matter is not one of debate at all.
If McConnell wasn’t trying to stir the pot, he also wasn’t trying to lower the boil. What you didn’t hear McConnell say was that the whole notion that Obama is a Muslim is ridiculous because by any standard we use to evaluate the religious beliefs of our leaders, President Obama is a Christian. Nor did he go on to say that any politician who tries to benefit from this urban legend–by courting either Islamophobes or conspiracy nuts who think Obama is engaged in some kind of systematic deception–should be ashamed of himself”.
Democratic Rep. Alan Grayson however argued that
“Republicans want you to die quickly.” But the shamelessness of our politics can also be measured by silence. It’s just as embarrassing that in a case like this, no politician will take the high road against their political interest.
According to the article Republicans and conservatives could not be bothered to do the ethical thing highlighting that during the primaries, Hillary Clinton’s campaign staffers forwarded e-mails
relaying that Obama-is-a-Muslim. Hillary Clinton had also given unclear responses when asked whether she thought Obama was a Muslim. Furthermore her campaign strategist Mark Penn had planned to focus on what they called Obama’s “otherness”
wrote that political opponents suspicious of Obama’s beliefs apparently apply selective hearing
in its highest form where it requires real discipline to hear the President’s comments that might identify him in any way with Islam and miss all of the others that refer to his Christian faith.