Questions surrounding Barack Obama's faith have been never-ceasing since his 2008 presidential campaign. First, there were the Rev. Jeremiah Wright concerns. Then, there were the Muslim allegations (i.e. the notion that Obama was secretly hiding a supposed Islamic faith allegiance). But for the past couple of years, the main focus of skepticism about the president's religious adherence has been questioning surrounding how strongly he truly aligns himself with the Christian faith.
Last Month, Rev. Franklin Graham (son of famed evangelist Billy Graham) apologized after refusing to say that Obama is a Christian during televised interviews on MSNBC and CNN. This, of course, came just days after Republican presidential candidate Rick Santorum also questioned Obama's understanding of Biblical faith. Now, just one day before primaries in Alabama and Mississippi it seems it's not just public figures who have questions about the president's perception of a higher power.
In a poll released today, Public Policy Polling presented some startling results to questions asked of likely GOP voters in both of these states. When Republicans in Alabama were asked, "Do you think Barack Obama is a Christian or a Muslim, or are you not sure?," 45 percent said "Muslim," 14 percent said "Christian" and 41 percent selected "not sure." In Mississippi, the results among Republicans are even more surprising, with 52 percent saying Muslim, 12 percent say Christian and 36 percent claim that they aren't sure.
In addition to these findings, only 26 percent of likely Republican voters in Alabama believe in evolution, with 60 percent saying they don't and an additional 13 percent claiming they aren't sure. In Mississippi, the proportion believing in the theory dropped to 22 percent, with 66 not accepting it and 11 percent claiming uncertainty.
Sixty-eight percent of likely GOP voters in Alabama are evangelicals, with 70 percent of Mississippi voters reporting the same. One of the most startling findings is that only 54 percent of Mississippi GOP voters believe that interracial marriage should be legal (the poll shows 29 percent saying it should be illegal). The margin of error for the Mississippi poll was +/-3.8 percent; for the Alabama poll it was +/-4.0 percent.
(H/T: New York Magazine)