More Than 9 in 10 Americans Continue to Believe in God

June 3, 2011 05:36

More than 9 in 10 Americans still say “yes” when asked the basic question “Do you believe in God?”; this is down only slightly from the 1940s, when Gallup first asked this question. Professed belief is lower among younger Americans, Easterners, and liberals. – Gallup

From Gallup


Despite the many changes that have rippled through American society over the last 6 ½ decades, belief in God as measured in this direct way has remained high and relatively stable. Gallup initially used this question wording in November 1944, when 96% said “yes.” That percentage dropped to 94% in 1947, but increased to 98% in several Gallup surveys conducted in the 1950s and 1960s. Gallup stopped using this question format in the 1960s, before including it again in Gallup’s May 5-8 survey this year.

In 1976, Gallup began using a slightly different question format to measure belief in a deity — “Do you believe in God or a universal spirit?” — and found that 94% of Americans agreed. That percentage stayed fairly steady through 1994, and is at 91% in the May 2011 survey.


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