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Voters Give Mixed Marks to Influence of Religion on Government Policy

Voters have mixed feelings about how much influence religious leaders have when it comes to U.S. government policy, but very few believe most politicians put their religious faith first.

The latest Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey shows that 38% of Likely Voters believe religious leaders have too much influence on government policy, while 25% say they don’t have enough. Thirty percent (30%) believe religious leaders have about the right amount of influence when it comes to actions by the government. (To see survey question wording, click here.)

In November 2009, voters were more evenly divided. Thirty-one percent (31%) said religious leaders have too much influence, but the identical number (31%) said they weren’t influential enough. Thirty-two percent (32%) believed their level of influence is just about right. 

But only three percent (3%) of all voters believe most politicians are more concerned with following their religious faith than doing what’s right or getting reelected. Ten percent (10%) say politicians are more concerned about doing what they think is right, but the vast majority (82%) say getting reelected is their primary concern. Those numbers are little changed from last November.

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The survey of 1,000 Likely Voters was conducted on December 17-18, 2010 by Rasmussen Reports. The margin of sampling error is +/- 3 percentage points with a 95% level of confidence. Field work for all Rasmussen Reports surveys is conducted by Pulse Opinion Research, LLC. See methodology.

Are voters of some faiths more accepting than others of religious influence on government policy? How do Mainstream voters compare with the Political Class when it comes questions of religious faith and governance?  Become a Platinum Member to find out.

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