Puzzling poll numbers
A Pew poll released today revealed a trove of interesting and important data. The most-discussed finding is that 18 percent of Americans mistakenly believe President Obama is a Muslim, up from 11 percent who believed that in March 2009. Amy Sullivan and James Besser have interesting comments on this. A few things jumped out at me:
Â· Between March 2009 and July 2010, belief that Obama is a Muslim increased among demographic group listed in the survey, but the biggest increase was among conservative Republicans (from 18% to 34%).
Â· As Amy pointed out, 60 percent of those who believe Obama is a Muslim say they learned about his faith from the media.
Â· 58 percent of Americans have heard of the religious right, and 41 percent of Americans have heard of the religious left. However, only 10 percent say they’ve heard a lot about the religious left. I’d love to see how much the latter two figures have changed since 2004.
Â· 52 percent of conservative Republicans and 34 percent of liberal Democrats have heard of the religious left. Could this have something to do with Glenn Beck’s sustained attacks on social justice?