August 19th, 2010
11:06 PM ET

Franklin Graham: Obama born a Muslim, now a Christian

Evangelical leader Franklin Graham, son of famed presidential religious adviser Billy Graham, said Thursday that he believes President Barack Obama is a Christian, but that the president was born a Muslim because of his father's religious beliefs.

Asked by CNN Chief National Correspondent John King if he had any doubts about Obama's Christian faith, Graham, who has made controversial comments about Islam in the past, said the president's background is fueling the false perception that he is a Muslim.

Read the full story on CNN's Political Ticker

- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: Barack Obama • Christianity • Islam • Leaders • Politics

soundoff (82 Responses)
  1. shle896

    Who cares what this ridiculous BIGOT believes? He's disgusting and a total disgrace to Christianity.

    August 14, 2014 at 11:42 pm |
  2. CNote Carlton

    Some one once said,

    February 21, 2012 at 8:48 pm |
  3. CNote Carlton

    Franklin Graham Is a LIER AND A HYPOCRITE. He is nothing more than a Modern Day PHARISEE, The people that Jesus spoke about and DISPISED, during his time here on Earth.Because they felt they were more HOLY than everybody else. I don't know who died and left him god. deciding who is a Christian or Not. HE NEEDS TO SHUT HIS HELLISH MOUTH

    February 21, 2012 at 8:03 pm |
  4. Pam

    If this is true...that our president converted from Islam to Christianity, this fact will put our President's life in danger from a lot of Muslim people like any other Muslim individual who converted to Christianity in the middle east, unless if they are smart enough to use him for their own good.

    September 11, 2010 at 5:05 pm |
    • CNote Carlton

      FIRST OFF Franklin Graham is a LIER and HYPOCRITE, much like RICK SANTORUM./ RICK PERRY, and the Religious Right, Using those social dog whistles, trying to paint President Obama as something Other.These same Religious nuts, always claim to be Patriotic, but have proven over the past 3 years, with their DEVISIVENESS, that they HATE this President more than they love this Country. I grew up in the church, a (PENTECOSTAL CHURCH no less), much like Graham, but I refuse to call myself a Christian, because of people like FRANKLIN GRAHAM. I'd rather Be CHRISTLIKE

      February 21, 2012 at 8:29 pm |
  5. Joe

    I don't get it”, and I hope I don't. The “disease” of hated and lies being spread across the United States about our president may have no cure.

    Mr. Graham my not have political ambitions to seek public office, but he has ambitions to exert his influence in White House.

    Mr., Graham has put our country at risk for another terrorist attack by inflaming an already volatile Middle East crisis.

    Mr. Graham seeks to increase his "ditto" flock by playing a right wing smear campaign and the tea party fringe.

    Mr. Graham, unlike his is father man is a man of business instead of a Man of God.

    I look forward to an intelligent and thoughtful response.

    I hope that your next response will reveal a name

    August 23, 2010 at 5:15 am |
  6. Do you get it?

    In a interview process a person ask a question and the other person answers it. I don't believe that Franklin could give an answer that makes all people happy. Never the less it was his answer. Reporters look for people to give their two cents worth. Franklin has not thrown his hat into the political arena nor has he ran from politics. He has not passed judgement on Obama as some would like to say.
    Maybe once there could be an inteligent dialogue on an issue that does not contain name calling or slurs. Obama is what he is and does what he is going to do.
    In my book right wings / left wings will make tastie BBQ. We all will give answer for what we say or do. Are you prepared yourself to give an account? What if you are wrong? Are you prepared to live with the outcome? Don't spend your time blaming others or calling names. Live up to your own choices and stop hating on others oppinions.
    BTW I do wear a 50/50 tshirt and understand what that law is all about. I would explain it but I am sure you don't care to really know the truth.

    August 22, 2010 at 4:31 pm |
  7. Joe

    Mr. Graham should have said we are all born sinners.

    Instead he chose to say our president was born a Muslim as a result of the "seed of his father" I believe that such a statement is made with the purpose of spreading the "seed of doubt" being used by the right wing nuts. No one is born into having any religious affiliation it must be formed by parental influence or formed later through later life experiences.

    A large percentage of Americans already believe that he was not born in the United States and that he dislikes "whites". Now as a result of comments by Mr. Graham, even more will be convinced that he is Muslim. Since the oath of office this president has been the victim of a crusade to limit his success as our president. The next accusation will probably be that he fails to floss properly.

    If the president had reversed the pentagon's decision to "uninvite" Mr. Graham to the National Day of Prayer, Mr. Graham would probably not have made such comments on CNN.

    I believe that Mr. Grahams motivation for his comments "He was born a Muslim" were the result of the slight by the pentagon. In short Mr. Graham has shown that he, like all of us he is a sinner. I believe in this instance Mr. Graham is guilty of the "first deadly sin", PRIDE.

    While Mr. Graham has a right to his opinion, he has thrown his hat and his bible into the political arena. I believe that some in some religious leaders see themselves also as political saviors. I believe that some in politics see themselves also as religious saviors. What a concept separation of church and state.

    I have watched the video of the CNN interview many times. The only way I hear anything different is to mute the sound.
    I am white and windmills exist.

    August 22, 2010 at 2:26 am |
  8. Joe

    Our country may have seen it's best days.

    When Franklin Graham injects himself into politics to spread hate, fear, and bitterness toward our president we have reached a new low in America. Franklin was bitter when his invitation was removed from the national day of prayer (by the pentagon). I believe his motive in fueling doubt about our president in the recent CNN interview was totally VANITY. . Franklin has treated the ministry as a for profit business. I know that Franklin has a right to express his opinion, but in pushing the envelope he has put at risk his exempt status when he injecting himself into a political controversy.

    In May he said that if the president did not allow HIM to lead the National Day of Pray it would be a "slap in the face of all Christians".

    We have become a bitter nation wrapped in 2nd amendment solutions and lies.

    We were so proud to have elected the first black president. We thought that America had overcame thee race hatred.
    Not so. It is there and it is thriving.

    The "birthers", the Muslim linkers, the Becks, Limbaughs, Hannitys, Anglels, and Palins began a crusade to destroy this president the day he took oath.

    America as we knew it has morphed into country filled with lies and hate. We are not as good as we thought.

    God help America

    August 21, 2010 at 6:12 pm |
    • John

      Joe: You rant against "windmills" that don't exist. Why are you blaming Graham for something he did not do or say? People are listening to what others are saying he said, rather than listening to the transcript. Graham did not question Obama's faith. For one person to ask another person to confirm a third person's faith is absurd. Who can be the judge of a person's profession of faith? Graham did not choose to be that judge by saying "he (Obama) is a Christian". Rather, he said "if the man says he is, then we have no choice but to accept that as fact". That would be the correct conclusion.

      August 21, 2010 at 6:28 pm |
  9. andrew

    It's hard to believe that Franklin Graham could be more of a disgrace than his father, but it seems that he is. Additionally, you cannot be born a muslim or a christian, you become one.

    August 21, 2010 at 4:21 pm |
    • John

      Andrew, listen to the tape and hear what Graham said. Then, you will not need to be angry with him because he did not say what they claim he said.

      August 21, 2010 at 6:30 pm |
  10. Lawrence Gulotta

    There are no religious or faith tests for elected office in the United States of America. The question "Is the President a Christian?" is more fear mongering directed against the President of the United States.

    This is the type of question the KKK asks. Shame on you!!

    August 21, 2010 at 3:24 pm |
    • John

      For one person to ask another person to confirm a third person's faith is absurd. The problem is not with Graham, it is with people demanding he become a judge of another profession of faith. Graham stated correctly that we can only take the man's word for it. Nothing else matters. So, people should stop asking the question.

      August 21, 2010 at 6:33 pm |
  11. tagnga

    To Reality;
    Graham Ministries are very open about the distribution of funding and he doesn’t owe anyone an explanation as to why he’s not poor. This man heads a multitude of ministries that help those in need, all over the world. How does his salary compare to that of even one CEO of a major corporation? – And I bet allot of those CEOs don’t give at least 10% back to help the needy. The sin is to idolize money and place its value higher than God and people. The Grahams don’t idolize money and they utilize their resources to help others. What fruit DOES your radical atheism produce, other than condemning Christians?

    August 21, 2010 at 12:05 pm |
  12. Jo

    Guest-Handout? You know nothing...Shove your compassionate conservatism....don't want it....don't need nothing from your ilk!

    August 21, 2010 at 10:55 am |
  13. Jo

    The same old,lame scare tactics by the right wing neo-cons here........the fear tactics and lies of the conservative-right are alive and well! They just won't quit with their ignorance and stupidity.....Can we stick with reporting on the real issues.....unemployment, education, environment, immigration, and the like?

    August 21, 2010 at 6:55 am |
    • Guest


      Who pays for the unemployment, education, environment, immigration, and the like, while you sit by the mailbox waiting for YOUR handout?

      August 21, 2010 at 10:32 am |
  14. tagnga

    To Selfish Gene;
    You wrote, "I can't figure out how many people don't understand the difference between a right and a privilege.
    Did you create this website?" In America, freedom of speech and freedom of religion are RIGHTS – not Privileges and CNN, is a major (liberal) news media, not just someone's website.

    August 20, 2010 at 11:17 pm |
  15. Tom

    Franklin Graham is a mean-spirited, racist, hate filled, money hungry opportunist who is leading his sheepish followers to the path of darkness and destruction. The only reason he is where he is today is because he is daddy's little boy.

    The first thing Franklin needs to do is to confess his sins and become a Christian. Christians are not hateful, judgmental or disrespectful. Where in the Bible is it written that the "seed of Christianity" is passed from the father? Is he just making stuff up so he can castigate a black President. So Obama's mother is incapable of passing the "seed" of religion to her son?

    August 20, 2010 at 10:15 pm |
    • John

      Tom: " Where in the Bible is it written that the "seed of Christianity" is passed from the father?" Graham said the exact opposite of this. He said being a Christian is a matter of a person's heart and that no one can judge this from the outside. Why the hate towards Graham? He did not say anything hateful. Look at the tape!

      August 21, 2010 at 6:37 pm |
  16. Winski

    Franklin Graham disgraced himself in front of the entire planet tonight and YOU, CNN, gave him the platform to do this. John King, in probably he most unprofessional display of journalistic carelessness, displayed CNN's clear bias for right-wing only, evangelical belief systems and verified what has been speculated for many years – CNN is NOT a news organization anymore, it's a FOX clone and therefore nothing more than a propaganda machine.. And a bad one at that.

    John King needs to make a public apology to peoples of the world for his horrendous behavior and fired – publicly after that apology. Franklin Graham should be shunned by every organization on the planet for being a bigot and an ideologue of hate and lies. He has clearly demonstrated he is capable of nothing short of insulting a third of the planet's population and has done so with personal glee. He should be denounced by his family, the US Government and all public institutions that have any dealing with persons or organizations that the Graham family is associated with – public and private.

    August 20, 2010 at 8:24 pm |
1 2
About this blog

The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.