January 15, 2009

Religion and the Presidency

On Jan. 20, 2009, Barack Obama will be sworn in as the 44th president of the United States. The Pew Research Center’s Forum on Religion & Public Life has assembled a variety of resources on religion and the presidency, including reports, event transcripts, polling data and a graphic featuring the religious affiliations of U.S. presidents past and present.

Graphic
The Religious Affiliations of U.S. Presidents

Jan. 15, 2009
Nearly half the nation’s presidents have been affiliated with the Episcopal or Presbyterian churches. John F. Kennedy remains the only Catholic to have held the nation’s highest office.

Event
Religion and Race: A Historical and Contemporary Perspective
Dec. 8, 2008
As part of his Pew Forum discussion on religion and race in America, Eddie S. Glaude of Princeton University spoke about the challenges President-elect Obama might face when he takes office.

Profile
Barack Obama
Nov. 6, 2008
The Pew Forum’s profile of President-elect Obama includes an in-depth religious biography, Obama’s positions on values-laden issues and more.

Profile
Joe Biden
Nov. 6, 2008
The Pew Forum’s profile of Vice President-elect Joe Biden includes a religious biography, Biden’s positions on values-laden issues and more.

Q&A
John DiIulio Previews How Faith-Based Initiatives Would Change if Barack Obama Is Elected President
Sept. 23, 2008
To discuss how an Obama administration might approach faith-based and community initiatives, the Pew Forum posed a series of questions to John J. DiIulio Jr., who has worked extensively on this issue.

Survey
More Americans Question Religion’s Role in Politics
Aug. 21, 2008
A summer 2008 survey by the Pew Research Center’s Forum on Religion & Public Life and the Pew Research Center for the People & the Press found that an overwhelming majority of the public continues to say that it is important that a president have strong religious beliefs.

Q&A
The Purpose-Driven Campaign: The Candidates’ Forum With Rick Warren
Aug. 14, 2008
John McCain and Barack Obama made their first joint appearance of the 2008 general election at a forum moderated by Pastor Rick Warren, who will be delivering President-elect Obama’s inaugural invocation. Pew Forum Senior Fellow John Green answered questions about what the candidates stood to gain from speaking with Warren and the challenges Warren faces as he attempts to broaden evangelicals’ political agenda.

Event
Religion, Rhetoric and the Presidency: A Conversation with Michael Gerson
Dec. 6, 2004
Michael Gerson, a former speechwriter for outgoing President George W. Bush, spoke at a Pew Forum event about the role of religious rhetoric in presidential speeches.

More Resources


PRC logoPew Research Center

Jan. 5, 2009
States of the Union Before and After Bush
Pew Research Center for the People & the Press

Dec. 30, 2008
From BarackObama.com to Change.gov
Pew Internet & American Life Project

Dec. 18, 2008
Bush and Public Opinion
Pew Research Center for the People & the Press

News

Jan. 12, 2009
Gay bishop will open inaugural weekend
Politico

Jan. 10, 2009
Obama Names Minister to Lead Prayer Service
The New York Time

Jan. 8, 2009
Presidential church choice sends political, spiritual messages
Religion News Service

Blogs

Jan. 12, 2009
Inaugural Prayers Through History — The Ultimate Archive
Steven Waldman

Jan. 12, 2009
So Help Me God
Spiritual Politics

Jan. 12, 2009
This is our moment, this is our time
The Immanent Frame

Jan. 9, 2009
Obama Asks Court to Include ‘So help me God’ at Inauguration
Christianity Today