Majority of Americans Say Trump Not Religious, But Most U.S. Adults Say Joe Biden Is, Survey Finds

A 63 percent majority of Americans say they don't view President Donald Trump as a particularly religious person, but a 55 percent majority of U.S. adults say former Vice President Joe Biden likely holds to his Catholic faith.

Trump has mentioned God in public remarks more than his presidential predecessors and has used evangelical Christian practices during Oval Office prayers. But recent Pew Research Center surveys published Wednesday reveal only 35 percent of Americans believe Trump is somewhat religious and only 7 percent say he is "very" religious. Forty percent of Americans said Trump, who has previously described himself as a "Presbyterian Protestant," is actually "not at all" religious. Trump's ties to the Christian faith are questioned on partisan lines, with 87 percent of Democrat-leaning voters agreeing Trump is not religious while 62 percent of Republicans say he is religiously affiliated.

More than one-third of those surveyed by Pew last month said they are not sure what, if any, religion is practiced by the president. By comparison, a slight majority of Americans say Biden, who identifies as Catholic, is a man of religion. Fewer than half of Americans said they think Trump is a Christian.

Black members of protestant churches made up the highest percentage of Americans who are "not sure" if Trump is tied to any religion. And 84 percent of Black protestants said they don't view Trump as religious. But among the country's white evangelicals, just shy of two-thirds say they believe Trump is at least "somewhat" religious. Both white evangelicals and Republican-leaning voters held the highest percentage, 12 percent, who said they believe Trump is "very religious." And just under one-quarter of overall Americans said Trump is likely "not too" religious.

A statistically non-existent amount of Jewish and Democrat-leaning respondents, respectively, described Trump as "very" religious.

Trump has on several occasions appeared at White House events or campaign rallies alongside Florida televangelist Paula White, and other Christian leaders as they conducted prayers. In 2017, Trump held an Oval Office prayer which utilized the Pentecostal ritual known as the "laying on of hands" as he sat at his desk. In January, Trump told member of the evangelical base in Miami: God is "on our side." The president has long enjoyed overwhelming support among evangelical and white Christians across the country.

Forty-six percent of Americans surveyed by Pew last month said Trump's Democratic Party counterpart, Biden, is "somewhat" religious, with an additional 9 percent describing him as "very" religious. About 39 percent of those surveyed said Biden is either "not too" religious or 11 percent saying he is "not at all" religious.

The same survey last month showed 60 percent of Americans, slightly fewer than Trump, say Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders is likely not religious. If Sanders should go on to win the Democratic presidential nomination, he would become the country's first Jewish president. Just over one-third of U.S. adults said they believe Sanders is at least "somewhat" religious.

In stark contrast to questions over Trump's religion, Americans are much clearer about the religion of Vice President Mike Pence - who was raised Catholic but describes himself as evangelical. About 70 percent of those surveyed said Pence is at least somewhat religious, with 43 percent describing him as "very religious."

The White House did not respond to Newsweek's request for comment by publication time.

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A 63 percent majority of Americans say they don't view President Trump as religious, but a 55 percent majority of U.S. adults say Joe Biden likely holds to his Catholic faith. MARK WILSON / Staff/Getty Images
Majority of Americans Say Trump Not Religious, But Most U.S. Adults Say Joe Biden Is, Survey Finds | U.S.