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New class of Congress nearly doubles number of religiously unaffiliated

New class of Congress nearly doubles number of religiously unaffiliated

A “Faith on the Hill” study of the newly sworn-in 113th Congress’s religious makeup reveals that the number of members with no religious affiliation is on the rise. Besides nearly doubling the number of religiously unaffiliated members from the 112th ( 6) to the 113th (10 members), the 113th also has among its ranks the first member ever to describe their religion as “none.”

The study, conducted by Pew in November 2012 and updated on January 2, 2013, compares the religious makeup of Congress over time. They also looked at how the numbers compare with the U.S. population:

Perhaps the greatest disparity, however, is between the percentage of U.S. adults and the percentage of members of Congress who do not identify with any particular religion. About one-in-five U.S. adults describe themselves as atheist, agnostic or “nothing in particular” – a group sometimes collectively called the “nones.” But only one member of the new Congress, Kyrsten Sinema (D-Ariz.), is religiously unaffiliated, according to information gathered by CQ Roll Call. Sinema is the first member of Congress to publicly describe her religion as “none,” though 10 other members of the 113th Congress (about 2%) do not specify a religious affiliation, up from six members (about 1%) of the previous Congress.2 This is about the same as the percentage of U.S. adults in Pew Research Center surveys who say that they don’t know, or refuse to specify, their faith (about 2%).

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Comments

Thank you Anne for posting the truth about our reps.

The more atheistic our country becomes the more like Europe it will become – in all ways. Nietzche’s ” the will to power” “beyond good and evil” is upon us now. The synthesis of God’s Good and human evil is now being encouraged (i.e., homosexuality). But nihilism will only temporarily reign. God’s people will suffer now but justice WILL be served.

Does this necessarily mean different values? If I recall correctly, we had a few atheist Republican conservatives on this board.

    Juba Doobai! in reply to janitor. | January 6, 2013 at 10:28 pm

    Yes, it means different values. If man is not ridden by God, he is ridden by the devil. The man who does not fear God has no check against his evil acts and is a law unto himself. He may feel sorrow for taking a life but in the absence of belief in God and eternal reward or punishment, has only his self will to prevent him from killing again. His thought is that because there is no greater power than himself all is permissible.

    Like David, I believe it is better to be subject to the hand of God (particularly for punishment) than to the hand of man. There is no good man, whatever the political philosophy may be. There is only the an of faith and the infidel; and, as little as I trust the man of faith to do what is right (the good thing that he should do, he does not; the evil he should not do, he does), I trust the infidel not at all.

      janitor in reply to Juba Doobai!. | January 6, 2013 at 11:40 pm

      What about a Buddhist? Or someone like Hitchens?

        BannedbytheGuardian in reply to janitor. | January 7, 2013 at 12:20 am

        Unfortunately my favorite dogs that I want to meet up with again were Labradors & there is no way they got to Heaven.

        Sorry Sally & Juba . It is the bad road for me.

        janitor in reply to janitor. | January 7, 2013 at 12:32 am

        Never mind. I’m confused. “Religious affiliation” includes Wicca, Scientology, other pagan religions, but not someone who is agnostic but has Christian American values?

          elliesmom in reply to janitor. | January 7, 2013 at 8:21 am

          You might as well just give on this one. A person who does good things just because it’s the right thing to do has been declared morally inferior to the person who does good because they fear the retribution of a mythical creature. It’s just the way it is.

        Juba Doobai! in reply to janitor. | January 7, 2013 at 9:01 am

        No knowledge, fear, love, and trust in the One True God? Dead in the hereafter.

        Let us not confuse civil acts and faith. Pretty much every one does civil acts. Pretty much everyone obeys the law. Sorta. That one does or says ‘good’ things does not mean one is good in the eyes of God because the answer to that question has already been established: there is none good but God. In the divine scheme of things, you may do a world of ‘good’ even as you rejected God, and all that you have done means jack squat. So, the Buddhist and Hitchens, dead in sin, equally, both because they knew of the One True God and rejected Him. When He said He is a jealous feller, He meant it.

        So, does that mean Jewish and Christian believers are better than the infidel? (I don’t mean ‘infidel’ as a pejorative; it’s merely a word signifying one not of faith, an unbeliever.) The answer to that is this: the grace of God. He calls everybody. While we cannot decide to turn to Him, When He puts out His hand and lifts us up, we can reject Him. So, if a person rejects Him, no need to get on a high horse because others didn’t; if a person says he doesn’t know if there’s a God, no need to be miffed at the person who says with absolute certainty that there is a God. Everyone heard the same Word that was sown, had the same hand lifting us up.

    creeper in reply to janitor. | January 7, 2013 at 8:39 am

    I am one of those “atheist Republican conservatives” and I resent the comments on this board implying that my religious beliefs…or lack of them…make me a threat to this country.

    I am not “ridden by the devil” nor do I deserve the “justice [that] will be served” on me.

    It’s words like these that drove me away from religion. Far from changing my mind, you have confirmed my decision.

    This is a legal/political board, not Jesus.com. Professor, if you don’t want to lose a substantial number of your readers I suggest you not post something like this again.

      Juba Doobai! in reply to creeper. | January 7, 2013 at 9:13 am

      So because you don’t like what you heard, many voices should be censored? What you’re essentially objecting to is the pricking of your conscience and my analysis of what the increase in government of the number of infidels may mean for people of faith. You’re basically saying no one is allowed to say anything you might find offensive, even to the point of demanding that Wm not post on topics which might produce responses that discomfit you.

      This is a discussion board, not an amen corner, so all views can be expressed. Instead of demanding censorship, I challenge you to disprove my analysis. Prove me wrong from history. Show me the error in my claim that the increase in infidels can lead to bad things for people of faith.

      I will start it off by pointing to the war against Christmas and the constant demands for the removal of anything pertaining to faith from the public square. I won’t mention Communist Russia or China. The ball’s in your court now.

BannedbytheGuardian | January 6, 2013 at 6:59 pm

When the numbers are so small eg 6 it is rasy to achieve multiples though correct to describe them as doubling .However it is hardly an overwhelming force.

16 – 20 % is the figure on corresponding Census surveys in Westen nations.

It means more in some systems eg The House of Lords gets corresponding Bishops or somebody seated per percentage. There is a drive to ask people to be more honest in filling out forms.

I suspect there is a large number of secular Christians who only goto church for weddings funerals & Good Friday.

    Juba Doobai! in reply to BannedbytheGuardian. | January 6, 2013 at 10:36 pm

    There is no such thing as a secular Jew or Christian. Every Jew is bound by the laws of Judaism. Every Christian is a slave of Christ and so is bound to him. Since secularists respect no such bond, faith and secularism are mutually exclusive. Therefore, to be secular (though some prattle about being culturally Jewish) is to be infidel.

Take out your wallets, get a Sharpie, and cross off the “God” from your currency.

If you’ve got a fine tip marker, then go ahead and write in “Gov’t” where appropriate.

Don’t lose that Sharpie, because you may need to add some zeros shortly…

We are arriving at the looking-glass (apology to Lewis Carroll):

“When I use a word hold a conservative principle,” Humpty Dumpty said, in rather a scornful tone, “it means just what I choose it to mean—neither more nor less.”
“The question is,” said Alice, “whether you can make words principles mean so many different things.”
“The question is,” said Humpty Dumpty, “which is to be master — that’s all.”

This augurs trouble for people of faith, especially Jews and Christians. The natural propensity of man is towards oppression because the heart of man is evil. JudaeoChristians’s faith in God is the leaven, the check against bad acts. Sometimes, even that is not enough when the person’s mind and heart s so twisted that he will elevate his evil inclination by claiming God told him to.

People of no faith, believing in nothing, do believe in something: the power of themselves and their own ideas. Not believing, they ave nothing inside them that would check them from writing and enacting legislation that would harm people, especially those of faith. In fact, it is in part because of Obama’s insistence on crushing the Church that I would like to believe he is a rabid atheist, but his ring and his actions, especially against Israel and the Church, signify he is your garden variety Islamist paving the way for Islam by destroying the opposition with law fare.

So, this rise of the infidels in congress is dangerous for us. It means every bit of legislation must be scrutinized. Rope who don’t believe in anything believe in everything and see all religions and ideologies masquerading as religion as the same. Therefore, with this new lot, we might ourselves ave paved the way for the further ascendance of Islam in America. When you degrade Judai-Christianity and are scared of the killer kid on the block, that killer kid is going to fill the vacuum created by the oppression of the benevolent force.

    because the heart of man is evil

    No. It is fallen. It has a propensity toward evil acts, but is free to choose good.

    If I had my druthers, I’d live in a Catholic confessional state. Short of that, it would be good to have lawmakers who agree on a few things, like thou shalt not murder, commit adultery, steal, bear false witness, and covet. Unfortunately, I find few among the religiously affiliated, especially those who claim to be Catholic, who agree to these. Is it better among those who claim no religion? I doubt it.

      Juba Doobai! in reply to JerryB. | January 6, 2013 at 11:41 pm

      Check the Scripture on the heart of man. Man, in the entirety, is fallen with the consequence that his heart is desperately wicked. None good, no, not one.

      After the Inquisition and the various persecutions of non-Catholics (I grew up Catholic in a country where, in my grandmother’s and mother’s time, you had to convert to Catholicism if you wanted a good job or such) I prefer to live in a country in which there is freedom of worship and the government understands that religion (Islam is excluded since it is a political ideology) is to be protected from infringement by the State, and that freedom of religion does not mean freedom from religion in the public square. I prefer to live in a country under such a structure that understands the importance of Judaism to every facet and aspect of its civilization and being.

No religious affiliation doesn’t necessarily mean no religious or spiritual beliefs. I for one, am a non-denominational Christian. I don’t affiliate with any particular synod, parish, congregation, stake, or presbyter.
If being a Christian is an affiliation that is monitored by this report, I have to ask the question, “Just why does it really matter what a representatives personal faith is?” It’s almost akin to affirmative action or census breakdowns. We are ALL americans. The only thing that ought to matter is how their faith translates into policy, and that can be easily found out by consulting a voting record.

Since the Vietnam war, leftists in our schools and in our media did an excellent job of polluting the minds of the electorate, including getting the right to vote to 18 year old kids.

The rest of ‘us’ did a very bad job of facing them down. The trend continues, as the unbelievable asses in the GOP re-voted in Pee-Wee Boehner to fail again in facing down the greatest internal threat our nation has ever faced.

A lot of them worship [per Jamie Foxx] Obama, ‘our Lord God and Savior’. Does this count as religion …. or sheer stupidity?

This lack of religious affiliation explains the propensity of our politicians to lie to themselves and to us. They gravitate toward no moral and no honor. It is much easier to be a politician that way.

    walls in reply to RickCaird. | January 7, 2013 at 3:48 pm

    I agree – no moral and no honor. I understand separation of church and state – yet it is ironic to see people who claim to be ‘good Catholics’ such as Pelosi defend abortion to the fullest. Pelosi probably even believes the government should supply free gerbils.

    I can’t understand how God-fearing politicians support some of the policies they do. One thing I am sure of … the best days of this country are in the rear view mirror and disappearing from view.

Count me in the “unaffiliated.”

One does not have to be religious to be moral. I know dozens of regular church goers that I would not trust in a pinch.

OTOH, religion does provide a moral compass for a lot of people and that is a good thing.

On the negative side of the equation, certain religious groups are counter productive and they exist within America as well as overseas.

One thing is paramount and that is the constitutional requirement for separation of church and state…

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