Survey: More Americans plan to pray than party for New Year's
December 31st, 2010
04:32 PM ET

Survey: More Americans plan to pray than party for New Year's

By Dan Gilgoff, CNN Belief Blog Co-Editor

More Americans plan to pray than party Friday as they mark New Year's Eve, according to a recent survey.

Washington Post On Faith flags a Rasmussen Reports survey released Tuesday that found 42% of Americans will ring in 2011 with a drink, while just 21% plan to attend a New Year's Eve party.

But most Americans - 66% - said they will say a prayer on New Year's.

Twenty-five percent of adults say they will not pray before midnight. (Might this bunch comprise many of the revelers?)

A Rasmussen survey last year reported a similar breakdown in New Year's Eve plans.

The survey of 1,000 adults from across the country was conducted from December 26 to 27 by Rasmussen Reports.

The margin of sampling error is +/- 3 percentage points with a 95% level of confidence, according to the pollster.

While we're on the subject, what are your New Year's Eve plans?

- CNN Belief Blog Co-Editor

Filed under: Polls • Prayer

soundoff (174 Responses)
  1. cici

    You atheist people are ridiculous do you really think you were evolved from monkeys..... mabey thats why you all are so stupid. We come from GOD and theres nothing you can do to stop this. GOD ROCKS !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    December 31, 2010 at 7:39 pm |
    • monkeylove

      I love simians like I love my God aka my genitalia

      December 31, 2010 at 7:49 pm |
    • andybud

      No, I don't believe we evolved from monkeys.

      But, then again, I also understand what evolution actually suggests.

      You might want to try doing the same.

      December 31, 2010 at 8:05 pm |
    • stupidpeoplekiller

      You are a true fool to be that blind and closed minded. One of the only reasons you believe in god, or anyone believes in god, is because your mind can not contemplate the idea of not existing so you need to make up a fictional place like heaven or hell to cope with it. And you try so hard to believe it that you close all the logic parts of your brain down and fail to accept the tangible. Were there is nothing "god" fills the gaps. That is just a lame excuse for "I don't want to deal with reality"

      December 31, 2010 at 8:05 pm |
    • Religious Morons

      You really believe the earth and humans were "created" 6,000 years ago? REALLY? REALLY? You believe that?

      December 31, 2010 at 8:17 pm |
    • Motrek

      You know, the really scary thing is that evolution (that is, mutation leading to the increase of genetic information necessary for the existence of more complex life forms) just doesn't happen. It doesn't work. Has never been demonstrated to work. Darwin himself defined conditions which if someday observed would require his theory of evolution be abandoned. Those conditons have been observed. Natural selection does work, but that's just the paring down of different genetic options that were already existing.
      It's scary because a rational person has to face the fact that we DIDN'T evolve from lower life forms. But if clinging to evolution makes us feel better, great!

      December 31, 2010 at 8:53 pm |
    • pastafarian

      We are all atheist... some people just take it one god further than you apparently do. And evolutionist do not believe that "we evolved from monkeys." You could learn something from atheists... quite a few of us have read at least one version of the Bible all the way through, if not multiple other 'holy' books. Why not pick up a reputable book on evolution and common descent. Then you could at least give the illusion of being able to have an intelligent conversation.

      January 1, 2011 at 1:03 pm |
  2. LJB

    How is this NEWS? The FOX Propaganda machine at its best!
    Let’s prepare for a Annus Mirabilis …

    December 31, 2010 at 7:39 pm |
    • DeAguaDulce

      You're at CNN, friend. You can hardly blame Fox for this. If you're right, however, and CNN is merely recycling Fox News, then why would you come here?

      December 31, 2010 at 8:08 pm |
  3. W1CK3D

    praying only shows and is a sign or weakness

    December 31, 2010 at 7:38 pm |
  4. JT

    I just hope I'm not praying to the porcelain god in the morning.

    December 31, 2010 at 7:36 pm |
  5. Superhiro

    I call massive BS on this survey. No possible way this is accurate.

    December 31, 2010 at 7:35 pm |
  6. MAria Ashot

    Have prayed, right before midnight, and shall pray again in the morning. Lots to pray about. Also had a lovely glass of champagne with the very thoughtful restaurateur downstairs; took calls from loved ones; sent emails; chatted via Skype; read, wrote, worked, resolved, danced, laughed, listened to all kinds of music, wished & generally reflected... The perfect New Year's. Thank you, BBC and CNN and CBS and everyone else. Let's hope for improvements on all fronts in 2011! And praying can only help us all.

    December 31, 2010 at 7:34 pm |
  7. David

    So we have 66% praying and 42% drinking. Which leaves at minimum ~8% both praying and drinking. I, for one, certainly hope they don't pray while intoxicated; this could create the need for (a somewhat embarrassing) post-New Year's prayer for forgiveness for a New Year's Eve prayer.

    December 31, 2010 at 7:33 pm |
  8. There are no gods!

    What a great way to do absolutely nothing constructive yet nothing destructive at the same time. Praying has about the same effect as sitting and staring at a wall. Well at least you wont be out in the world making others life difficult while you sit there praying your heart out. Praying is synonymous with doing nothing, good for you for doing nothing with your time.

    December 31, 2010 at 7:30 pm |
  9. Monique

    All praise to the Flying Spaghetti Monster 😉

    December 31, 2010 at 7:29 pm |
  10. john316

    This one's too easy....I just can't take a shot at it....I'm still in the holiday spirit.....I hope everyone gets what they pray or hope for.....these Rasmussen reports always seem slightly skewed...not sure why....the 25% that won't pray before midnight...I hope they know their time zone.....could be tricky for those on the borders.....

    December 31, 2010 at 7:26 pm |
    • Honestly....

      ....the only people who will be praying tonight are the fools that are "one-eyeing" it home at 2 a.m. and hope to God they don't drive into a sobriety checkpoint. Get real.

      December 31, 2010 at 7:31 pm |
    • diggion

      Also... Glenn Beck, Rush Limbaugh, child molesters... wait the previous two are included in that last category

      December 31, 2010 at 7:33 pm |
  11. whattheheck

    Where do they find these people. I have never heard of this poll and no ever ask what I'm doing.

    Did ask 10 people for the result at a church?

    December 31, 2010 at 7:23 pm |
  12. C Hood

    I cant believe they actually posted that statistic. The two aren't mutually exclusive, you can have a drink AND pray according to the question, therefore its erroneous to state that more people will pray than drink. Do your homework CNN

    December 31, 2010 at 7:21 pm |
    • Amateur Night

      Yes, and those who have too many drinks will be praying at the porcelain altar later. Happy amateur night y'all!

      December 31, 2010 at 7:36 pm |
  13. Pablo

    Rasmussen? I guess when the polling sample is comprised of white conservative republicans one might expect this result.

    December 31, 2010 at 7:21 pm |
  14. andybud

    Rasmussen? This would be the polling outfit that "inexplicably" greatly over-favored Republicans in most polls in the last year?

    I can't imagine how a poll of theirs would also say most American plan to pray (and that's leaving aside the societal impulse that might lead one to answer "pray" over "drink and hate myself the next morning").

    P.S. God is not real.

    P.P.S. Happy New Year!

    December 31, 2010 at 7:20 pm |
    • Pablo

      Ha! you beat me to the punch!

      December 31, 2010 at 7:22 pm |
  15. David Nytrai

    Yes..let us waste our collective time by praying.

    December 31, 2010 at 7:20 pm |
  16. RightTurnClyde

    We've got lots to pray about. I think most Americans realize by now not to put false hope in elected politicians (whew! hard lesson). You've got yourself and God. We ought to be able to count on ourselves for most of our day-to-day life needs. (and most of use life from one day to the next .. even if we have a 5 year plan). When things get tough we ask God for courage, patience, wisdom, guidance, grace. We get ti. We find it (as well) in the gospels. Acts, epistles, Isaiah, Jeremiah, Ezekiel, Kings, Leviticus, Numbers, Deuteronomy. [Walk on, walk on with HOPE in your heart and faith Jesus Christ and you'll never walk alone] .. and I never have.

    December 31, 2010 at 6:31 pm |
    • Doug

      I'm glad this nonsense works for you.. But how about the mother who holds her starving child till he dies.. Did god do that ? You seem to forget the real hurt in this world as you live in your nice houses here in America.. What a bunch of hog wash this really is.. Walk alone, WHAT ?

      December 31, 2010 at 7:45 pm |
  17. Al Bluengreenenbrownenburger

    66 percent? Hmmmmm. Back in 2003, 69% believed that Saddam Hussien was personally involved in 9/11 and that Iraqis were amongst the hijackers, despite widespread reports by the CIA news to the contrary. 54% of people who attended Church once a week or more stated that they approved of the use of torture, a number that jumps to 62 percent for white evangelical Protestants (Who would Jesus torture?). All kind of the same number.

    Basically, 66% of Americans are complete nincompoops.

    December 31, 2010 at 5:46 pm |
    • AMEN

      AMEN, mr. burger. Thank you thank you thank you, and happy new year. Hope youre not wasting your time praying. Nuke a beached whale for jesus. Amen.

      December 31, 2010 at 7:22 pm |
    • bunny

      OMG. Don't you know Jesus is our Savior? Emmanuel lives!!

      December 31, 2010 at 7:25 pm |
    • Willard

      Even better, an overwhelming 90% did not know Jesus was a jew...talk about shock and awe!

      December 31, 2010 at 7:31 pm |
    • Doug

      Finally a post that makes sense ... This god stuff is too much... Where do these idiots get this stuff ?

      December 31, 2010 at 7:39 pm |
  18. Enoch

    Happy New Year - an eye-opening-year for those who are not priviledged to hear, see and feel the power of GOD!!

    December 31, 2010 at 5:34 pm |
    • darwin

      Father of evolution here. Americans stopped evolving 200 years ago. I witnessed it today at Wal-Mart. A woman vomitted into her infant son's mouth a bag of Cheetos

      December 31, 2010 at 7:27 pm |
    • charlie darwin

      Father of evolution here. Americans stopped evolving 200 years ago. I witnessed it today at Wal-Mart. A woman vomitted into her infant son's mouth a bag of Cheetos

      December 31, 2010 at 7:28 pm |
    • Willard

      Or not.

      December 31, 2010 at 7:30 pm |
    • Doug

      You lost me with that one.. Hmmm... God ? really ?

      December 31, 2010 at 7:37 pm |
    • geckopelli

      Are you threatening us with more terroist attacks?

      December 31, 2010 at 7:45 pm |
    • Sara

      When something goes wrong in your life, do not say "öh my God", unless you are talking to your God who is Satan. See how far you get with him when you are sick and need a prayer. The only prayer that God would hear from you would be after your prayer of repentance. I do have sympathy for you though. We are not robots; so how do you explain the perfection of God's creations.

      January 11, 2011 at 6:24 pm |
  19. Yolanda

    GOD is not man-made.

    December 31, 2010 at 5:24 pm |
    • HotAirAce

      A woman created all that nonsense!?! I learn something new every day...

      December 31, 2010 at 5:43 pm |
    • Robcado

      God is an idea. You know nothing of God, if a God or Gods exist. Don't be afraid of the unknown.

      December 31, 2010 at 7:52 pm |
    • Meh

      God is nothing.

      January 2, 2011 at 12:51 pm |
  20. David Johnson

    Hmmm... I will also pray. I will pray for more drinks!

    Cheers to everyone!

    December 31, 2010 at 5:04 pm |
    • Let Us Prey

      ... and somehow I'm sure that you're prayer will be answered ! You'll have proven the existence of God ! HNY, David.

      December 31, 2010 at 5:08 pm |
    • HotAirAce

      I strongly suggest you also go shopping, else you will likely be thirsty. We can discuss later if it was praying or shopping that was successful. Me, I can't bring myself to pray to any imaginary man-made enti-ties so am well stocked.

      December 31, 2010 at 5:13 pm |
    • Doug

      You know what's crazy about these surveys is they only have numbers for land lines.. Who has a land line these days ? Old folks ?

      December 31, 2010 at 7:34 pm |
    • Ec1warc1

      Pray? ha ha ha ha ha ha ha! That is too funny! Thank god I am an atheist!

      December 31, 2010 at 8:09 pm |
    • John

      Pray, and ask for me, why does God, in his omniscience give HIV to babies in Africa?

      I would really like to know what sins they made – is it because they are gay?

      December 31, 2010 at 8:09 pm |
    • mary

      why can't i reply through facebook like on other cnn pages? cmon cnn get with it!

      January 1, 2011 at 9:32 pm |
    • GEM


      January 2, 2011 at 4:25 pm |
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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.