2016-07-27

Religious Obama voters and religious McCain voters worship and pray at similar rates but interpret the Bible in dramatically different ways--and have starkly different views on the issues—according to a new Beliefnet user survey.

Among those who attend church weekly, 81% of Obama supporters pray daily compared to 93% of McCain’s supporters. But when asked how they interpret the Bible, only 17% of Obama’s most religious voters believe “The Bible is the literal word of God,” compared to 58% of McCain’s religious voters.”

The user survey provides a unique glimpse at the voting patterns and preferences of the most religious of the Obama and McCain constituencies – those who attend church weekly or more. (Exit polls indicated that 55% of those who attend worship services weekly or more voted for McCain while 43% voted for Obama, an improvement over past Democratic performances.)

The survey also provides new comparisons of Obama’s and McCain’s evangelical supporters. Click here for more analysis.

Other key findings:

  • Half of McCain voters believe Obama is or was Muslim, with 31.7% saying “He used to be Muslim and still has too many connections to Islam.”
  • Many more Obama voters believe McCain ran an unchristian campaign, rather than vice versa.
  • Among the most religious voters, Obama supporters believe that education is the best way to reduce abortion, while McCain supporters prefer bans and restrictions on abortion.
  • Supporters of each candidate doubt the religious sincerity of the other candidate.

The survey is not scientific or based on random sampling. It was advertised throughout Beliefnet's Web site and newsletters. From November 3 through November 6 4,400 users completed the survey.

PRAYER - PERCEPTIONS OF CANDIDATE RELIGIOUSITY - OBAMA AND ISLAM - THE BIBLE - UNCHRISTIAN CAMPAIGNS? - THE MOST RELIGIOUS VOTERS: REDUCING ABORTION - THE MOST RELIGIOUS VOTERS: GAY MARRIAGE - THE MOST RELIGIOUS VOTERS: BORN AGAIN? - EVANGELICALS: CHURCH ATTENDANCE - EVANGELICALS: ABORTION - EVANGELICALS: REDUCING ABORTION - PRO-LIFE VOTERS - TOP ISSUES

PRAYER
More McCain supporters pray, but most Obama supporters pray, too. And the most religious McCain and Obama supporters pray in strikingly similar numbers.

 

PERCEPTIONS OF CANDIDATE RELIGIOUSITY 
Each side sees the candidate they supported as much more religious than the candidate they opposed.

 

OBAMA AND ISLAM
Though Obama doggedly denied the false rumors on the campaign trail, more than half of McCain voters believe that Obama is or was Muslim.

 

 

THE BIBLE
Even McCain's and Obama's most religious supporters have starkly different views on the Bible.

 

 

UNCHRISTIAN CAMPAIGNS?
Many more Obama supporters believe McCain ran an unchristian campaign, rather than vice versa.

 

THE MOST RELIGIOUS VOTERS: REDUCING ABORTION
Among the most religious voters, Obama and McCain supporters differ sharply on the best way to reduce abortion.

 

The most religious Obama supporters think the president--regardless of who it is--won't seriously affect the abortion rate, while most religious McCain supporters believe the Arizona senator would have reduced the rates more.

 

THE MOST RELIGIOUS VOTERS: GAY MARRIAGE
Even the most religious Obama supporters favor gay marriage, while almost no very religious McCain supporters do.

 

THE MOST RELIGIOUS VOTERS: BORN AGAIN?
Evangelicals comprise  a major chunk of weekly churchgoers for McCain, but not for Obama.

Even the most religious Obama supporters are pro-choice, while very few religious McCain supporters are.

 

EVANGELICALS: CHURCH ATTENDANCE
The church attendance patterns for Obama and McCain voters are remarkably similar.

 

EVANGELICALS: ABORTION
Half of evangelical Obama supporters are pro-choice, while all but a few evangelical McCain supporters are pro-life.

 

EVANGELICALS: REDUCING ABORTION
Evangelicals for Obama and McCain differ sharply on how best to reduce the number of abortions.

Most evangelical Obama supporters think the president--regardless of who it is--won't seriously affect the abortion rate, while most evangelical McCain supporters believe the Arizona senator would have reduced the rates more.

PRO-LIFE VOTERS
Pro-lifers for Obama and McCain differ sharply on how best to reduce the number of abortions.

Most pro-life Obama supporters think the president--regardless of who it is--won't seriously affect the abortion rate, while most pro-life McCain supporters believe the Arizona senator would have reduced the rates more.

TOP ISSUES
Evangelicals and frequent churchgoers for Obama cited the economy and the Iraq war as their top issues, while evangelicals and frequent churchgoers for McCain cited abortion and the character of the candidates.