Hope for America? Pew survey shows new Congress more religious than rest of U.S.

by Will Hall, |

WASHINGTON (Christian Examiner) – The Pew Center for Research released information January 5 about the religious affiliation of the newly elected body of U.S. Representatives and Senators with surprising results: Congress claims greater religious affiliation than the rest of the country.

Gallup released data in December showing about 1 in 5 Americans have no religious affiliation (16 percent said none/atheist/agnostic and another 3 percent declined to answer).

Now Pew has revealed that at least notionally, our incoming elected representatives in the federal legislature are more religious than the constituents they serve, with only 0.2 percent (less than a quarter of one percent) saying they have no religious affiliation and another 1.7 percent not answering the question.

According to the data, the 114th Congress is more Protestant than the public at large (57.2 percent compared to 49 percent), more Catholic (30.7 percent to 22.0 percent) and more Jewish, too (5.2 percent, 2.0 percent, respectively).

On the other hand, there are fewer Baptists in this group than in the general population (14.8 percent versus 17 percent) and fewer Pentecostals as well (0.6 percent vice 4 percent).

Only one person chose to self-identify as religiously unaffiliated, Rep. Kyrsten Sinema, D-Ariz.