Muslim voters could swing election, report finds
Owla Awada manages a popular bakery in Dearborn, Michigan, a possible battleground state in November.
April 3rd, 2012
03:35 PM ET

Muslim voters could swing election, report finds

By Richard Allen Greene, CNN

(CNN) - The number of Muslims in the United States is tiny - less than one in 100 Americans - but their votes could sway the results of the presidential election in November, a new study says.

That's because they are concentrated in a number of key swing states, says Farid Senzai, the author of the report.

Take Florida, for example, the state that famously swung the 2000 presidential election for George W. Bush over Al Gore.

Bush won by 537 votes - while a get-out-the-vote phone bank contacted 23,000 Muslims in one day during elections in 2008 and 2010, the report says.

Nauman Abbasi - the head of Emerge USA, which ran the phone bank - says efforts like his will increase Muslim voter turnout.

There are about 1.2 million registered Muslim voters in the United States, according to the study, "Engaging American Muslims."

More religious Muslims and those more involved in their mosques are more likely to vote, it found.

The biggest Muslim populations are in New York and California, which are unlikely to be battleground states in November.

But the next largest numbers of Muslim voters are found in Pennsylvania, Michigan and Virginia, all of which could be key battlegrounds between President Barack Obama and his Republican opponent.

Florida and Ohio, two states that have been decided by razor-thin margins in recent years, also have enough Muslim voters to make a difference to the final result, the report says.

Of course, many other, larger constituencies, from Hispanics to women to the unemployed to political independents, could also claim to be the key ingredient in a winning coalition.

And Muslim voters have much the same concerns as the population at large, with domestic issues and the economy dominating, the study says.

Most Muslims voted for Bush in 2000, Democratic Sen. John Kerry in 2004 and Obama in 2008.

They are more likely than the population as a whole to approve of Obama's performance now, the study found.

The report comes from the Institute for Social Policy and Understanding, a Washington think tank focusing on Muslim issues. It is based largely on earlier data from sources including Gallup, Zogby International and the Pew Research Center.

- Newsdesk editor, The CNN Wire

Filed under: 2012 Election • Islam • Politics

soundoff (836 Responses)
  1. online-shopping, deals, bargains

    Simply desire to say your article is as astounding. The clarity to your post is simply nice and that i can assume you are an expert in this subject. Well together with your permission let me to grasp your feed to stay updated with coming near near post. Thank you one million and please keep up the gratifying work.

    April 19, 2012 at 3:42 pm |
  2. Hassan

    HAHA! Muslims always try to make themselves more numerous! I am an ex-muslim and could tell you some funny stories! I remember CAIR claiming there's 5% muslims in the US, just to read a few months later that in fact there's only 0.5%. For those who don't know: CAIR is a terrorist co-conspirator and FBI refuses to work with them. Most of CAIRS founders have been deported or arrested on terrorism charges.
    And -no surprise- Farid Senzai , the guy who made the study mentioned in this article, is associated with CAIR! And CNN of course doesn't even bother investigating that.

    April 15, 2012 at 3:49 am |
    • The Obama Christian Church Worldwide Campaign

      This is the reason why we worship and praise our good christian president Obama and that Obama will be Lord of the world on October 21st of this year. We need to use Obama to restore the traditional dictates of our good Word Of God or the Bible. The Obama Administration will help us christians restore the good morals of christianity which is good. We need to learn the gospels of Obama and Christ to restore the good morals of the world.

      April 18, 2012 at 3:22 pm |
    • Takashi

      Posted on LOL! He looks mortified. Actually, he looks like one of the Merry Men from Robin Hood, so that's not too bad, is it? Let him loose on the neooobirhhgd and he'll come back with some bags of gold. And in this economy . . .I'll have to send in one of my many craft fails. Sadly, they far outweigh my craft wins.deirdre’s last blog post..

      September 6, 2012 at 4:26 pm |
    • towghi

      I am also an ex Muslim but not a bigot full of hatred against Muslims as you seem to be.

      October 28, 2012 at 11:05 pm |
  3. Abedlrahman

    Let's see: 250 million Americans, 0.5% muslims according to Pew, that makes 1.25 million muslims. Not relevant. Get used to it.

    April 15, 2012 at 3:41 am |
    • Steve

      Yep! There's more cross dressers walking around in a sponge bob costume than 1.25 million. Muslims are irrelevant. And that is a good thing.

      April 15, 2012 at 3:42 am |
  4. Rob the muzzie

    The candidate who sucks up to muzzies is toast. Plain and simple.

    April 15, 2012 at 3:32 am |
  5. MNfree

    And on the other end of the spectrum here on CNN, they are discussing if Jesus existed. Even further, having the intellectual sense to post the article on Easter (that's when this 'fabled' Jewish leader rose from the grave to save the world). Maybe they weren't sure that people still believe in Jesus, and celebrate Easter without revering a bunny.

    And then you have this wonderful, hard-hitting, factual story. 1.2 Million people dispersed across the US certainly is a story and massive force to be reckoned with. .01% is more than sufficient to make some noise in the elections. Better tear down those crosses, after all, you don't want to offend anyone.

    The balanced reporting and stalwart journalism is staggering.

    April 10, 2012 at 9:24 am |
  6. DaOldWiseHippie

    1.2 million voters would not make any difference, lets be realistic

    April 10, 2012 at 1:14 am |
  7. DaOldWiseHippie

    cool to see AbuBakker faking as a muslim .. have fun

    April 10, 2012 at 1:14 am |
  8. Blazeofheals

    Ron Paul 2012 Folks.
    or its over for us

    April 9, 2012 at 9:16 pm |

    Reminds me of what happened to Al Gore back in 2000. Al Gore took a stand against Muslims, trying to impress Floridians. George Bush took over the opportunity and immediately filled the gap.

    10 million Muslims are primarily independents according to analyst. They can support any party that shows interested in them. I think Romney‘s team is up for grab for Muslim vote. Go Romney !

    April 9, 2012 at 1:11 am |
    • ted

      There are 3 million Muslims and 2.5 million Jews in America. Muslims are growing and Jews are declining in numbers.

      April 9, 2012 at 2:30 pm |
  10. Abubakker

    Detroit is one of our main staging points.. even the police do not enter into our community... prepare America your PEACE is coming

    April 8, 2012 at 8:11 pm |
    • Todd

      Bring it towel head.

      April 9, 2012 at 1:03 pm |
    • seyedibar

      We'll cheapen and degrade your religion just like we did christianity until its just a water-down myth that your grandchildren only loosely believe around holidays. Your primitive beliefs are no threat to the science, entertainment, enlightenment, and debaucharous fun that this country runs on.

      April 9, 2012 at 1:38 pm |
  11. christiem8

    1 in 100 people in the United States being Muslim is not insignificant. The question is, how many of that group can actually vote?

    April 8, 2012 at 6:03 pm |
    • seyedibar

      I've met many muslims in my region, but never one that had full citizenship, so I'm not concerned about them tilting the voter boxes

      April 9, 2012 at 1:40 pm |
    • Butair

      Many do not want to vote out of disgust since it doesn't matter. The unwillingness is more paramount in the first immigrants than the latter. I find it interesting when I hear of a fist-immigrant voting.

      May 27, 2012 at 2:54 pm |
  12. Iqbal Khan

    Ron Paul for President.......


    April 8, 2012 at 5:58 pm |
  13. Smeagel4T

    I'm shocked. The GOP hasn't figured out how to disenfranchise Muslim Americans yet? Wow. Time to get back to ALEC and start working on that!! It must be really tricking trying to figure out how to disenfranchise everyone except wealthy white middle aged males. I understand the GOP was going to start by placing all the voter ID registration locations inside men's lavatories.

    April 8, 2012 at 3:58 pm |
    • Abubakker

      I amazed at you comments.. public education is lacking in so many ways, as demonstrated by your comments. Islam is the religion of peace, and don;t you forget.... or else'

      April 8, 2012 at 8:06 pm |
  14. DrDonna Crichton Harmony, RN

    I will do what I can to make it happen!

    April 8, 2012 at 3:22 pm |
  15. Ken78

    I think it would be terrific if Romney, who clearly hates Muslims, loses the Presidency by narrowly losing Michigan due to the Muslim swing vote there. It would certainly be the greatest thing to happen in my lifetime.

    April 8, 2012 at 2:17 pm |
    • Skylar

      What makes you think Romney hates muslims?

      April 8, 2012 at 10:27 pm |
    • sloppyj30

      You use the word "clearly" . . I do not think it means what you think it means. Fezzik, tear his arms off.

      April 10, 2012 at 9:24 am |
  16. Shecky

    Of course Muslims will vote for Obama, a fellow Muslim.

    April 8, 2012 at 12:06 pm |
    • seyedibar

      He's an atheist, but it's cute that both the muslims and christians try to claim him.

      April 8, 2012 at 1:35 pm |
    • Ken78

      The other poster is correct. He is an atheist.

      April 8, 2012 at 2:01 pm |
    • jqent

      Do you take stupid pills, or is this just natural talent?

      April 8, 2012 at 2:54 pm |
    • northern light

      Obama an athiest......???? Great

      Welcome aboard son......ya all are quite welcome here.
      We accept all races and all colours ....only thing we will not accpet is .....absence of truth.

      April 8, 2012 at 4:17 pm |
    • Abubakker

      Fear Islam.... WE will take America, and do it legally /..... Then feel the true peace..

      April 8, 2012 at 8:09 pm |
  17. Gregory

    It's all conjecture anyway. Total BS.

    April 8, 2012 at 10:38 am |
  18. KHK

    CNN is a propaganda machine for antimuslim organized groups. It is better to watch BBC for world news than reading CNN's brainwashing hypocratic one sided antimuslim devisiive blogs. Be informed about what is happening in the world rather than being stuck in a CNN hole.

    April 8, 2012 at 10:35 am |
    • Marcus

      Whether CNN's facts are off by 1 or 1 million when it comes to Muslims in America any amount of Muslims in America is to many. Keep you hate filled religion and ignorant people in whatever backward county you come from in the Muslim world.

      April 8, 2012 at 10:55 am |
    • Ken78

      Marcus: Hates folks who belong to hate-filled religions.

      Ken: Hates folks who hate folks who belong to hate-filled religions.

      Yeah, this is good.

      April 8, 2012 at 2:13 pm |
    • John

      How can you possible stand there and judge that many people based on the actions of a few?

      April 10, 2012 at 7:37 am |
    • towghi

      Better to say that CNN is a closet FOX !

      October 28, 2012 at 11:28 pm |
  19. Anti-idiotism

    This article is about blah blah blah! They do not have the numbers, least to actually vote, and unorganized but you must see fiction that other do not see!

    April 8, 2012 at 9:55 am |
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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.