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New Congress Brings With It Religious Firsts

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New Congress Brings With It Religious Firsts

Details available through 2008

The new Congress will, for the first time, include a Muslim, two Buddhists 9Actually a philosophy more than a religion), more Jews than Episcopalians, and the highest-ranking Mormon in congressional history.

Roman Catholics remain the largest single faith group in Congress, accounting for 29 percent of all members of the House and Senate, followed by Baptists, Methodists, Presbyterians, Jews and Episcopalians.

While Catholics in Congress are nearly 2-to-1 Democrats, the most lopsidedly Democratic groups are Jews and those not affiliated with any religion.

Of the 43 Jewish members of Congress, there is only one Jewish Republican in the House and two in the Senate.

The six religiously unaffiliated members of the House are all Democrats.

The most-Republican groups are the small band of Christian Scientists in the House (all five are Republican), and members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (12 Republicans and three Democrats) -- though the top-ranking Mormon in the history of Congress will be Nevada Sen. Harry Reid, the incoming Democratic majority leader.

Baptists divide along partisan lines defined by race. > > >Black Baptists, like all black members of Congress, are Democrats,

> > > while most white Baptists are Republicans.

Notable exceptions include incoming House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer, D-Md., and Sen. Robert Byrd, D-W.Va., who will serve as president pro-tem in the new Senate, making him third in succession to the presidency after the vice president and House Speaker-elect Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif.

Because 2006 was such a good year for Democrats, they have regained their commanding advantage among Catholics, which had slipped during an era of GOP dominance.

In Pennsylvania alone, five new Democrats, all Catholics, were elected to Congress in November, including Bob Casey, who defeated Sen. Rick Santorum, a far more conservative Catholic.

In the new Congress, two-thirds of all Catholic members will be Democrats.

By contrast, after big Republican gains in 1994, 44 percent of Catholic members of Congress were Republican, according to Albert Menendez, a writer and researcher who has been counting the religious affiliation of members of Congress since 1972.

"It's a thankless task, but somebody's got to do it," said Menendez, 64, who lives in nearby North Potomac, Md., and has published his counts and analysis first with Americans United for Separation of Church and State and more recently in Voice of Reason, the newsletter of Americans for Religious Liberty. He is also the author of several books, including "Religion at the Polls" (1977), "John F. Kennedy: Catholic and Humanist" (1979) and "Evangelicals at the Ballot Box" (1996).

Menendez bases his count on how members of Congress identify themselves. When he did his first tally after the 1972 election, Congress was still much in the sway of a few mainline Christian faiths.

At the time, just three mainline Protestant denominations -- Methodists, Presbyterians and Episcopalians -- accounted for 43 percent of all members of Congress, including 51 senators.

Come January, those three will account for just a fifth of Congress, including 32 senators. Still, all three -- especially Episcopalians and Presbyterians -- continue to be better represented on Capitol Hill than among the general population.

Other historically important Christian denominations have suffered steep declines in Congress. Menendez said the Lyndon Johnson landslide of 1964 brought 14 Unitarians to Washington. In the next Congress there will be two -- Rep. Pete Stark, D-Calif., and Sen. Kent Conrad, D-N.D.

In the late 1960s there were 29 members of the United Church of Christ in Congress. In the new Congress, there will be only six, including Sen. Barack Obama, D-Ill. (now president obviously), who joined the church as an adult. (Obama's Kenyan father was from a Muslim background and his American mother's parents were non-practicing Baptist and Methodist.)

Through it all, Lutherans have maintained. Menendez said they were underrepresented relative to their population in 1972, with 16 members of Congress, and remain underrepresented today with 17. (While their total numbers have held steady, their political allegiance has flipped from 2-to-1 Republican to 2-to-1 Democrat.)

Evangelical Christians -- a category that cuts across denominational lines -- are even more underrepresented, according to Furman University political scientist James Guth, all the more so after this year's defeat of Republican incumbents like Reps. John Hostettler of Indiana and Jim Ryun of Kansas.

But perhaps the most underrepresented group in Congress is the 14 percent of all American adults who, according to the 2001 American Religious Identification Survey, conducted by scholars at the Graduate Center at the City University of New York, claim no religion at all.

Only six members of Congress, all Democrats, identify themselves as religiously unaffiliated:

Reps. John Tierney and John Olver of Massachusetts,

Earl Blumenauer of Oregon,

Neil Abercrombie of Hawaii,

Tammy Baldwin of Wisconsin and

Mark Udall of Colorado.

Meanwhile, Jews have continued to gain representation in Congress (8 percent in the new Congress) even as their share of the national population has waned (1.3 percent in 2001).

But Jewish numbers in Congress also tend to fluctuate with Democratic fortunes. In a year in which Democrats did well in unexpected places, new Jewish members of Congress were elected this fall from Tennessee, Kentucky, Arizona and New Hampshire, as well as more familiar terrain like Florida and Wisconsin.

For Buddhists and Muslims, the 110th Congress represents their first congressional representation.

The two Buddhist Democrats -- Reps. Mazie Hirono of Hawaii and Hank Johnson of Georgia -- both have avoided talking about their religion, saying it is an entirely private matter.

A spokesman for Hirono, who came to Hawaii with her mother from Japan when she was 8, would only confirm that Hirono was raised in the tradition of her mother's Jodo Shu Buddhism.

A spokesman for Johnson would only confirm that he became a Buddhist some 30 years ago and is affiliated with Soka Gakkai International, an American Buddhist association.

Like Johnson, Keith Ellison of Minnesota, the first Muslim elected to Congress, is a convert and African-American. Raised Catholic, he converted to Islam at age 19 while attending Wayne State University.

"The election of this first Muslim is quite important symbolically," said John Green, director of the Bliss Institute of Applied Politics at the University of Akron. "It may very well be the harbinger of greater acceptance of Muslims in the future."

Religion in the House, By State and Faith c. 2006 Religion News Service

(n: new member)

Alabama (5-2 Republican)1: Jo Bonner (R) Episcopalian2: Terry Everett (R) Baptist3: Mike D. Rogers (R) Baptist4: Robert Aderholt (R) Congregationalist-Baptist5: Bud Cramer (D) Methodist6: Spencer Bachus (R) Baptist7: Artur Davis (D) Lutheran

Alaska (1 Republican)At large: Don Young (R) Episcopalian

Arizona (4-4 split)1: Rick Renzi (R) Roman Catholic2: Trent Franks (R) Baptist3: John Shadegg (R) Episcopalian4: Ed Pastor (D) Roman Catholic5: Harry Mitchell (D) Roman Catholic (n)6: Jeff Flake (R) Mormon7: Raul M. Grijalva (D) Roman Catholic8: Gabrielle Giffords (D) Jewish (n)

Arkansas (3-1 Democratic)1: Marion Berry (D) Methodist2: Vic Snyder (D) Presbyterian3: John Boozman (R) Baptist4: Mike Ross (D) Methodist

California (34-19 Democratic)1: Mike Thompson (D) Roman Catholic2: Wally Herger (R) Mormon3: Dan Lungren (R) Roman Catholic4: John Doolittle (R) Mormon5: Doris Matsui (D) Methodist6: Lynn Woolsey (D) Presbyterian7: George Miller (D) Roman Catholic8: Nancy Pelosi (D) Roman Catholic9: Barbara Lee (D) Baptist10: Ellen Tauscher (D) Roman Catholic11: Jerry McNerney (D) Roman Catholic (n)12: Tom Lantos (D) Jewish13: Pete Stark (D) Unitarian14: Anna Eshoo (D) Roman Catholic15: Mike Honda (D) Protestant16: Zoe Lofgren (D) Christian17: Sam Farr (D) Episcopalian18: Dennis Cardoza (D) Roman Catholic19: George Radanovich (R) Roman Catholic20: Jim Costa (D) Roman Catholic21: Devin Nunes (R) Roman Catholic22: Kevin McCarthy (R) Baptist (n)23: Lois Capps (D) Lutheran24: Elton Gallegly (R) Protestant25: Howard McKeon (R) Mormon26: David Dreier (R) Christian Scientist27: Brad Sherman (D) Jewish28: Howard Berman (D) Jewish29: Adam Schiff (D) Jewish30: Henry Waxman (D) Jewish31: Xavier Becerra (D) Roman Catholic32: Hilda Solis (D) Roman Catholic33: Diane Watson (D) Roman Catholic34: Lucille Roybal-Allard (D) Roman Catholic35: Maxine Waters (D) Christian36: Jane Harman (D) Jewish37: Juanita Millender-McDonald (D) Baptist38: Grace Napolitano (D) Roman Catholic39: Linda Sanchez (D) Roman Catholic40: Edward R. Royce (R) Roman Catholic41: Jerry Lewis (R) Presbyterian42: Gary Miller (R) Protestant43: Joe Baca (D) Roman Catholic44: Ken Calvert (R) Protestant45: Mary Bono (R) Protestant46: Dana Rohrabacher (R) Baptist47: Loretta Sanchez (D) Roman Catholic48: John Campbell (R) Presbyterian49: Darrell Issa (R) Protestant50: Brian Bilbray (R) Roman Catholic51: Bob Filner (D) Jewish52: Duncan Hunter (R) Baptist53: Susan Davis (D) Jewish

Colorado (4-3 Democratic)1: Diana DeGette (D) Presbyterian2: Mark Udall (D) unaffiliated3: John Salazar (D) Roman Catholic4: Marilyn Musgrave (R) Assembly of God5: Doug Lamborn (R) Christian (n)6: Thomas G. Tancredo (R) Presbyterian7: Ed Perlmutter (D) Protestant (n)

Connecticut (4-1 Democratic)1: John Larson (D) Roman Catholic2: Joe Courtney (D) Roman Catholic (n)3: Rosa DeLauro (D) Roman Catholic4: Christopher Shays (R) Christian Scientist5: Chris Murphy (D) Protestant (n)

Delaware (1 Republican)At large: Michael N. Castle (R) Roman Catholic

Florida (16-9 Republican)1: Jeff Miller (R) Methodist2: Allen Boyd (D) Methodist3: Corrine Brown (D) Baptist4: Ander Crenshaw (R) Episcopalian5: Ginny Brown-Waite (R) Roman Catholic6: Cliff Stearns (R) Presbyterian7: John Mica (R) Episcopalian8: Ric Keller (R) Methodist9: Gus Bilirakis (R) Eastern Orthodox (n)10: Bill Young (R) Methodist11: Kathy Castor (D) Presbyterian(n)12: Adam Putnam (R) Episcopalian13: Vern Buchanan (R) Baptist (n)14: Connie Mack IV (R) Roman Catholic15: Dave Weldon (R) Christian16: Tim Mahoney (D) Methodist (n)17: Kendrick Meek (D) Baptist18: Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R) Roman Catholic19: Robert Wexler (D) Jewish20: Debbie Wasserman-Schultz (D) Jewish21: Lincoln Diaz-Balart (R) Roman Catholic22: Ron Klein (D) Jewish (n)23: Alcee Hastings (D) African Methodist Episcopal24: Tom Feeney (R) Presbyterian25: Mario Diaz-Balart (R) Roman Catholic

Georgia (7-6 Republican)1: Jack Kingston (R) Episcopalian2: Sanford Bishop (D) Baptist3: Jim Marshall (D) Roman Catholic4: Hank Johnson (D) Buddhist (n)5: John Lewis (D) Baptist6: Tom Price (R) Presbyterian7: John Linder (R) Presbyterian8: Lynn Westmoreland (R) Baptist9: Charlie Norwood (R) Methodist10: Nathan Deal (R) Baptist11: Phil Gingrey (R) Roman Catholic12: John Barrow (D) Baptist13: David Scott (D) Baptist

Hawaii (2 Democrats)1: Neil Abercrombie (D) unaffiliated2: Mazie Hirono (D) Buddhist (n)

Idaho (2 Republicans)1: Bill Sali (R) Evangelical (n)2: Mike Simpson (R) Mormon

Illinois (10-9 Democratic)1: Bobby Rush (D) Protestant2: Jesse Jackson Jr. (D) Baptist3: Dan Lipinski (D) Roman Catholic4: Luis Gutierrez (D) Roman Catholic5: Rahm Emanuel (D) Jewish6: Peter Roskam (R) Anglican (n)7: Danny Davis (D) Baptist8: Melissa Bean (D) Eastern Orthodox9: Janice D. Schakowsky (D) Jewish10: Mark Kirk (R) United Church of Christ11: Jerry Weller (R) Christian12: Jerry Costello (D) Roman Catholic13: Judy Biggert (R) Episcopalian14: Dennis Hastert (R) Protestant15: Timothy V. Johnson (R) Assembly of God16: Donald Manzullo (R) Baptist17: Philip Hare (D) Roman Catholic (n)18: Ray LaHood (R) Roman Catholic19: John Shimkus (R) Lutheran

Indiana (5-4 Democratic)1: Peter Visclosky (D) Roman Catholic2: Joe Donnelly (D) Roman Catholic (n)3: Mark Souder (R) Evangelical4: Steve Buyer (R) Methodist5: Dan Burton (R) Christian6: Mike Pence (R) Christian7: Julia Carson (D) Baptist8: Brad Ellsworth (D) Roman Catholic (n)9: Baron Hill (D) Methodist (n)

Iowa (3-2 Democratic)1: Bruce Braley (D) Presbyterian (n)2: David Loebsack (D) Methodist (n)3: Leonard Boswell (D) Reorganized Latter-day Saints4: Tom Latham (R) Lutheran5: Steve King (R) Roman Catholic

Kansas (2-2 split)1: Jerry Moran (R) Methodist2: Nancy Boyda (D) Methodist (n)3: Dennis Moore (D) Protestant4: Todd Tiahrt (R) Assembly of God

Kentucky (4-2 Republican)1: Ed Whitfield (R) Methodist2: Ron Lewis (R) Baptist3: John Yarmuth (D) Jewish (n)4: Geoff Davis (R) Baptist5: Harold Rogers (R) Baptist6: Ben Chandler (D) Presbyterian

Louisiana (5-2 Republican)1: Bobby Jindal (R) Roman Catholic2: William Jefferson (D) Baptist3: Charlie Melancon (D) Roman Catholic4: Jim McCrery (R) Methodist5: Rodney Alexander (R) Baptist6: Richard H. Baker (R) Methodist7: Charles Boustany Jr. (R) Episcopalian

Maine (2 Democrats)1: Tom Allen (D) Protestant2: Mike Michaud (D) Roman Catholic

Maryland (6-2 Democratic)1: Wayne Gilchrest (R) Methodist2: Dutch Ruppersberger (D) Methodist3: John Sarbanes (D) Eastern Orthodox (n)4: Albert Wynn (D) Baptist5: Steny Hoyer (D) Baptist6: Roscoe Bartlett (R) Seventh-day Adventist7: Elijah Cummings (D) Baptist8: Chris Van Hollen (D) Episcopalian

Massachusetts (10 Democrats)1: John Olver (D) unaffiliated2: Richard Neal (D) Roman Catholic3: James McGovern (D) Roman Catholic4: Barney Frank (D) Jewish5: Marty Meehan (D) Roman Catholic6: John Tierney (D) unaffiliated7: Ed Markey (D) Roman Catholic8: Michael Capuano (D) Roman Catholic9: Stephen Lynch (D) Roman Catholic10: Bill Delahunt (D) Roman Catholic

Michigan (9-6 Republican)1: Bart Stupak (D) Roman Catholic2: Peter Hoekstra (R) Christian Reformed3: Vern Ehlers (R) Christian Reformed4: Dave Camp (R) Roman Catholic5: Dale Kildee (D) Roman Catholic6: Fred Upton (R) Protestant7: Tim Walberg (R) Protestant (n)8: Mike Rogers (R) Methodist9: Joe Knollenberg (R) Roman Catholic10: Candice Miller (R) Presbyterian11: Thaddeus McCotter (R) Roman Catholic12: Sander Levin (D) Jewish13: Carolyn Cheeks Kilpatrick (D) Baptist14: John Conyers (D) Baptist15: John Dingell (D) Roman Catholic

Minnesota (5-3 Democratic)1: Tim Walz (D) Lutheran (n)2: John Kline (R) Methodist3: Jim Ramstad (R) Protestant4: Betty McCollum (D) Roman Catholic5: Keith Ellison (D) Muslim (n)6: Michele Bachmann (R) Evangelical Lutheran (n)7: Collin Peterson (D) Lutheran8: James Oberstar (D) Roman Catholic

Mississippi (2-2 split)1: Roger Wicker (R) Baptist2: Bennie Thompson (D) Methodist3: Chip Pickering (R) Baptist4: Gene Taylor (D) Roman Catholic

Missouri (5-4 Republican)1: William Lacy Clay Jr. (D) Roman Catholic2: Todd Akin (R) Christian3: Russ Carnahan (D) Methodist4: Ike Skelton (D) Disciples of Christ5: Emanuel Cleaver II (D) Methodist6: Sam Graves (R) Baptist7: Roy Blunt (R) Baptist8: Jo Ann Emerson (R) Presbyterian9: Kenny Hulshof (R) Roman Catholic

Montana (1 Republican)At large: Denny Rehberg (R) Episcopalian

Nebraska (3 Republicans)1: Jeff Fortenberry (R) Roman Catholic2: Lee Terry (R) Methodist3: Adrian Smith (R) Christian (n)

Nevada (2-1 Republican)1: Shelley Berkley (D) Jewish2: Dean Heller (R) Mormon (n)3: Jon Porter (R) Roman Catholic

New Hampshire (2 Democrats)1: Carol Shea-Porter (D) Roman Catholic (n)2: Paul Hodes (D) Jewish (n)

New Jersey (7-6 Democratic)1: Rob Andrews (D) Episcopalian2: Frank LoBiondo (R) Roman Catholic3: Jim Saxton (R) Methodist4: Chris Smith (R) Roman Catholic5: Scott Garrett (R) Protestant6: Frank Pallone (D) Roman Catholic7: Mike Ferguson (R) Roman Catholic8: Bill Pascrell Jr. (D) Roman Catholic9: Steve Rothman (D) Jewish10: Donald Payne (D) Baptist11: Rodney Frelinghuysen (R) Episcopalian12: Rush Holt Jr. (D) Quaker13: Albio Sires (D) Roman Catholic (n)

New Mexico (2-1 Republican)1: Heather Wilson (R) Methodist2: Steve Pearce (R) Baptist3: Tom Udall (D) Mormon

New York (23-6 Democratic)1: Tim Bishop (D) Roman Catholic2: Steve Israel (D) Jewish3: Peter T. King (R) Roman Catholic4: Carolyn McCarthy (D) Roman Catholic5: Gary Ackerman (D) Jewish6: Gregory Meeks (D) Baptist7: Joseph Crowley (D) Roman Catholic8: Jerrold Nadler (D) Jewish9: Anthony D. Weiner (D) Jewish10: Edolphus Towns (D) Baptist11: Yvette D. Clarke (D) Christian (n)12: Nydia Velazquez (D) Roman Catholic13: Vito Fossella (R) Roman Catholic14: Carolyn Maloney (D) Presbyterian15: Charles Rangel (D) Roman Catholic16: Jose Serrano (D) Roman Catholic17: Eliot Engel (D) Jewish18: Nita Lowey (D) Jewish19: John Hall (D) Christian (n)20: Kirsten Gillibrand (D) Roman Catholic (n)21: Michael McNulty (D Roman Catholic22: Maurice Hinchey (D) Roman Catholic23: John M. McHugh (R) Roman Catholic24: Michael Arcuri (D) Roman Catholic (n)25: Jim Walsh (R) Roman Catholic26: Tom Reynolds (R) Presbyterian27: Brian Higgins (D) Roman Catholic28: Louise Slaughter (D) Episcopalian29: Randy Kuhl (R) Episcopalian

North Carolina (7-6 Democratic)1: G.K. Butterfield (D) Baptist2: Bob Etheridge (D) Presbyterian3: Walter Jones (R) Roman Catholic4: David Price (D) Baptist5: Virginia Foxx (R) Roman Catholic6: Howard Coble (R) Presbyterian7: Mike McIntyre (D) Presbyterian8: Robin Hayes (R) Presbyterian9: Sue Myrick (R) Evangelical Methodist10: Patrick McHenry (R) Roman Catholic11: Heath Shuler (D) Baptist (n)12: Mel Watt (D) Presbyterian13: Brad Miller (D) Episcopalian

North Dakota (1 Democrat)At large: Earl Pomeroy (D) Presbyterian

Ohio (11-7 Republican)1: Steve Chabot (R) Roman Catholic 12: Jean Schmidt (R) Roman Catholic 23: Michael Turner (R) Protestant4: Jim Jordan (R) Christian (n)5: Paul Gillmor (R) Methodist6: Charlie Wilson (D) Roman Catholic (n) 37: David Hobson (R) Methodist8: John Boehner (R) Roman Catholic 49: Marcy Kaptur (D) Roman Catholic 510: Dennis Kucinich (D) Roman Catholic 611: Stephanie Tubbs Jones (D) Baptist12: Patrick Tiberi (R) Roman Catholic 713: Betty Sutton (D) Methodist (n)14: Steve LaTourette (R) Methodist15: Deborah Pryce (R) Presbyterian16: Ralph Regula (R) Episcopalian17: Tim Ryan (D) Roman Catholic 818: Zack Space (D) Eastern Orthodox (n) 9

Oklahoma (4-1 Republican)1: John Sullivan (R) Roman Catholic2: Dan Boren (D) Methodist3: Frank Lucas (R) Baptist4: Tom Cole (R) Methodist5: Mary Fallin (R) Christian (n)

Oregon (4-1 Democratic)1: David Wu (D) Presbyterian2: Greg Walden (R) Episcopalian3: Earl Blumenauer (D) unaffiliated4: Peter DeFazio (D) Roman Catholic5: Darlene Hooley (D) Lutheran

Pennsylvania (11-8 Democratic)1: Robert Brady (D) Roman Catholic 12: Chaka Fattah (D) Baptist3: Phil English (R) Roman Catholic 24: Jason Altmire (D) Roman Catholic (n) 35: John Peterson (R) Methodist6: Jim Gerlach (R) Protestant7: Joe Sestak (D) Roman Catholic (n) 48: Patrick Murphy (D) Roman Catholic (n) 59: Bill Shuster (R) Lutheran10: Chris Carney (D) Roman Catholic (n) 611: Paul Kanjorski (D) Roman Catholic 712: John Murtha (D) Roman Catholic 813: Allyson Schwartz (D) Jewish14: Michael Doyle (D) Roman Catholic 915: Charles Dent (R) Presbyterian16: Joseph Pitts (R) Protestant17: Tim Holden (D) Roman Catholic 1018: Tim Murphy (R) Roman Catholic 1119: Todd Platts (R) Episcopalian

Rhode Island (2 Democrats)1: Patrick Kennedy (D) Roman Catholic2: James Langevin (D) Roman Catholic

South Carolina (4-2 Republican)1: Henry Brown Jr. (R) Baptist2: Joe Wilson (R) Presbyterian3: J. Gresham Barrett (R) Baptist4: Bob Inglis (R) Presbyterian5: John Spratt (D) Presbyterian6: Jim Clyburn (D) African Methodist Episcopal

South Dakota (1 Democrat)At large: Stephanie Herseth (D) Lutheran

Tennessee (5-4 Democratic)1: David Davis (R) Baptist (n)2: John J. Duncan Jr. (R) Presbyterian3: Zach Wamp (R) Baptist4: Lincoln Davis (D) Baptist5: Jim Cooper (D) Episcopalian6: Bart Gordon (D) Methodist7: Marsha Blackburn (R) Presbyterian8: John S. Tanner (D) Disciples of Christ9: Steve Cohen (D) Jewish (n)

Texas (19-12 Republican, one TBD)1: Louie Gohmert (R) Baptist2: Ted Poe (R) Church of Christ3: Sam Johnson (R) Methodist4: Ralph Hall (R) Methodist5: Jeb Hensarling (R) Episcopalian6: Joe Barton (R) Methodist7: John Culberson (R) Methodist8: Kevin Brady (R) Roman Catholic9: Al Green (D) Christian10: Michael McCaul (R) Roman Catholic11: Mike Conaway (R) Baptist12: Kay Granger (R) Methodist13: Mac Thornberry (R) Presbyterian14: Ron Paul (R) Protestant15: Ruben Hinojosa (D) Roman Catholic16: Silvestre Reyes (D) Roman Catholic17: Chet Edwards (D) Methodist18: Sheila Jackson Lee (D) Seventh-day Adventist19: Randy Neugebauer (R) Baptist20: Charlie Gonzalez (D) Roman Catholic21: Lamar Smith (R) Christian Scientist22: Nick Lampson (D) Roman Catholic (n)23: TBD, Dec. 12 runoff between incumbent Republican Henry Bonilla, a Baptist, and Democratic challenger Ciro Rodriguez, a Roman Catholic24: Kenny Marchant (R) Nazarene25: Lloyd Doggett (D) Methodist26: Michael Burgess (R) Episcopalian27: Solomon Ortiz (D) Methodist28: Henry Cuellar (D) Roman Catholic29: Gene Green (D) Methodist30: Eddie Bernice Johnson (D) Baptist31: John Carter (R) Lutheran32: Pete Sessions (R) Methodist

Utah (2-1 Republican)1: Rob Bishop (R) Mormon2: Jim Matheson (D) Mormon3: Chris Cannon (R) Mormon

Vermont (1 Democrat)At large: Peter Welch (D) Roman Catholic (n)

Virginia (8-3 Republican)1: Jo Ann Davis (R) Assembly of God2: Thelma Drake (R) United Church of Christ3: Robert Scott (D) Episcopalian4: Randy Forbes (R) Baptist5: Virgil Goode (R) Baptist6: Bob Goodlatte (R) Christian Scientist7: Eric Cantor (R) Jewish8: Jim Moran (D) Roman Catholic9: Rick Boucher (D) Methodist10: Frank Wolf (R) Presbyterian11: Thomas M. Davis (R) Christian Scientist

Washington (6-3 Democratic)1: Jay Inslee (D) Protestant2: Rick Larsen (D) Methodist3: Brian Baird (D) Protestant4: Doc Hastings (R) Roman Catholic5: Cathy McMorris (R) Christian6: Norm Dicks (D) Lutheran7: Jim McDermott (D) Episcopalian8: Dave Reichert (R) Lutheran9: Adam Smith (D) Christian

West Virginia (2-1 Democratic)1: Alan Mollohan (D) Baptist2: Shelley Moore Capito (R) Presbyterian3: Nick Rahall (D) Presbyterian

Wisconsin (5-3 Democratic)1: Paul Ryan (R) Roman Catholic2: Tammy Baldwin (D) unaffiliated3: Ron Kind (D) Lutheran4: Gwen Moore (D) Baptist5: F. James Sensenbrenner Jr. (R) Episcopalian6: Tom Petri (R) Lutheran7: Dave Obey (D) Roman Catholic8: Steve Kagen (D) Jewish (n)

Wyoming (1 Republican)At large: Barbara Cubin (R) Episcopalian

Various Denominations

AFRICAN METHODIST EPISCOPAL -- 22D, 0RAlcee Hastings, D-FLJames Clyburn, D-SC

ANGLICAN -- 10D, 1RPeter Roskam, R-IL

ASSEMBLY OF GOD -- 40D, 4RMarilyn Musgrave, R-COTimothy Johnson, R-ILTodd Tiahrt, R-KSJo Ann Davis, R-VA

BAPTIST -- 6029D, 31RBarbara Lee, D-CAJuanita Millender-McDonald, D-CACorrine Brown, D-FLKendrick Meek, D-FLSanford Bishop, D-GAJohn Lews, D-GAJohn Barrow, D-GADavid Scott, D-GAJesse Jackson Jr., D-ILDanny Davis, D-ILJulia Carson, D-INWilliam Jefferson, D-LAAlbert Wynn, D-MDSteny Hoyer, D-MDElijah Cummings, D-MDCarolyn Kilpatrick, D-MIJohn Conyers, D-MIDonald Payne, D-NJGregory W. Meeks, D-NYEdolphus Towns, D-NYG.K. Butterfield, D-NCDavid Price, D-NCHeath Shuler, D-NCStephanie Tubbs Jones, D-OHChaka Fattah, D-PALincoln Davis, D-TNEddie Bernice Johnson, D-TXAlan Mollohan, D-WVGwen Moore, D-WITerry Everett, R-ALMike Rogers R-ALSpencer Bachus R-ALTrent Franks R-AZJohn Boozman, R-ARKevin McCarthy, R-CADana Rohrabacher, R-CADuncan Hunter, R-CAVern Buchanan, R-FLLynn Westmoreland, R-GANathan Deal, R-GADonald Manzullo, R-ILRon Lewis, R-KYGeoff Davis, R-KYHarold Rogers, R-KYRodney Alexander, R-LARoger Wicker, R-MSChip Pickering, R-MSSam Graves, R-MORoy Blunt, R-MOSteve Pearce, R-NMFrank Lucas, R-OKHenry Brown Jr., R-SCJ. Gresham Barrett, R-SCDavid Davis, R-TNZach Wamp, R-TNLouie Gohmert, R-TXMike Conaway, R-TXRandy Neugebauer, R-TXRandy Forbes, R-VAVirgil Goode Jr., R-VA

BUDDHIST -- 22D, 0RHank Johnson, D-GAMazie Hirono, D-Hi

CHRISTIAN (no denomination) -- 166D, 10RZoe Lofgren, D-CAMaxine Waters, D-CAYvette D. Clarke, D-NYJohn Hall, D-NYAl Green, D-TXAdam Smith, D-WADoug Lamborn, R-CODave Weldon, R-FLJerry Weller, R-ILDan Burton, R-INMike Pence, R-INTodd Akin, R-MOAdrian Smith, R-NEJim Jordan, R-OHMary Fallin, R-OKCathy McMorris, R-WA

CHRISTIAN REFORMED -- 20D, 2RPeter Hoekstra, R-MIVernon Ehlers, R-MI

CHRISTIAN SCIENTIST -- 50D, 5RDavid Dreier, R-CAChristopher Shays, R-CTLamar Smith, R-TXRobert Goodlatte, R-VAThomas Davis, R-VA



DISCIPLES OF CHRIST -- 22D, 0RIke Skelton, D-MOJohn Tanner, D-TN

EASTERN ORTHODOX -- 43D, 1RMelissa Bean, D-ILJohn Sarbanes, D-MDZack Space, D-OHGus Bilirakis, R-FL

EPISCOPALIAN -- 278D, 19RSam Farr, D-CAChris Van Hollen, D-MDRob Andrews, D-NJLouise Slaughter, D-NYBrad Miller, D-NCJim Cooper, D-TNRobert Scott, D-VAJim McDermott, D-WAJo Bonner, R-ALDon Young, R-AKJohn Shadegg, R-AZAnder Crenshaw, R-FLJohn Mica, R-FLAdam Putnam, R-FLJack Kingston, R-GAJudy Biggert, R-ILCharles Boustany Jr., R-LADenny Rehberg, R-MTRodney Frelinghuysen, R-NJRandy Kuhl, R-NYRalph Regula, R-OHGreg Walden, R-ORTodd Platts, R-PAJeb Hensarling, R-TXMichael Burgess, R-TXF. James Sensenbrenner Jr., R-WIBarbara Cubin, R-WY

EVANGELICAL -- 20D, 2RBill Salli, R-IDMark Souder, R-IN

EVANGELICAL LUTHERAN -- 10D, 1RMichele Bachmann, R-MN


JEWISH -- 3029D, 1RGabrielle Giffords, D-AZTom Lantos, D-CABrad Sherman, D-CAHoward Berman, D-CAAdam Schiff, D-CAHenry Waxman, D-CAJane Harman, D-CABob Filner, D-CASusan Davis, D-CARobert Wexler, D-FLDebbie Wasserman Schultz, D-FLRon Klein, D-FLRahm Emanuel, D-ILJanice D. Schakowsky, D-ILJohn Yarmuth, D-KYBarney Frank, D-MASander Levin, D-MIShelley Berkley, D-NVPaul Hodes, D-NHSteven Rothman, D-NJSteve Israel, D-NYGary Ackerman, D-NYJerrold Nadler, D-NYAnthony D. Weiner, D-NYEliot Engel, D-NYNita Lowey, D-NYAllyson Schwartz, D-PASteve Cohen, D-TNSteve Kagen, D-WIEric Cantor, R-VA

MORMON -- 102D, 8RTom Udall, D-NMJim Matheson, D-UTJeff Flake, R-AZWally Herger R-CAJohn Doolittle, R-CAHoward McKeon, R-CAMike Simpson, R-IDDean Heller, R-NVRob Bishop, R-UTChristopher Cannon, R-UT


LUTHERAN -- 148D, 6RArtur Davis, D-ALLois Capps, D-CATim Walz, D-MNCollin Peterson, D-MNDarlene Hooley, D-ORStephanie Herseth, D-SDNorm Dicks, D-WARon Kind, D-WIJohn Shimkus, R-ILTom Latham, R-IABill Shuster, R-PAJohn Carter, R-TXDave Reichert, R-WATom Petri, R-WI

METHODIST -- 4822D, 26RBud Cramer, D-ALMarion Berry, D-ARMike Ross, D-ARDoris Matsui, D-CAAllen Boyd, D-CATim Mahoney, D-FLBaron Hill, D-INDavid Loebsack, D-IANancy Boyda, D-KSDutch Ruppersberger, D-MDBennie Thompson, D-MSRuss Carnahan, D-MOEmanuel Cleaver II, D-MOBetty Sutton, D-OHDan Boren, D-OKBart Gordon, D-TNChet Edwards, D-TXLloyd Doggett, D-TXSolomon Ortiz, D-TXGene Green, D-TXRick Boucher, D-VARick Larsen, D-WAJeff Miller, R-FLRic Keller, R-FLBill Young, R-FLCharles Norwood, R-GASteve Buyer, R-INJerry Moran, R-KSEd Whitfield, R-KYJim McCrery, R-LARichard Baker, R-LAWayne Gilchrest, R-MDMike Rogers, R-MIJohn Kline, R-MNLee Terry, R-NEJim Saxton, R-NJHeather Wilson, R-NMPaul Gillmor, R-OHDavid Hobson, R-OHSteve LaTourette, R-OHTom Cole, R-OKJohn Peterson, R-PASam Johnson, R-TXRalph Hall, R-TXJoe Barton, R-TXJohn Culberson, R-TXKay Granger, R-TXPete Sessions, R-TX

MUSLIM -- 11D, 0RKeith Ellison, D-MN

NAZARENE -- 10D, 1RKenny Marchant, R-TX

PRESBYTERIAN -- 3514D, 21RVic Snyder, D-ARLynn Woolsey, D-CADiana DeGette. D-COKathy Castor, D-FLBruce Braley, D-IABen Chandler, D-KYCarolyn Maloney, D-NYBob Etheridge, D-NCMike McIntyre, D-NCMel Watt, D-NCEarl Pomeroy, D-NDDavid Wu, D-OHJohn Spratt, D-SCNick Rahall, D-WVJerry Lewis, R-CAJohn Campbell, R-CAThomas G. Tancredo, R-COCliff Stearns, R-FLTom Feeney, R-FLTom Price, R-GAJohn Linder, R-GACandice Miller, R-MIJo Ann Emerson, R-MOTom Reynolds, R-NYHoward Coble, R-NCRobin Hayes, R-NCDeborah Pryce, R-OHCharlie Dent, R-PAJoe Wilson, R-SCBob Inglis, R-SCJimmy Duncan, R-TNMarsha Blackburn, R-TNMac Thornberry, R-TXFrank Wolf, R-VAShelley Moore Capito, R-WV

PROTESTANT (no denomination) -- 228D, 14RMike Honda, D-CAEd Perlmutter, D-COChris Murphy, D-CTBobby Rush, D-ILDennis Moore, D-KSTom Allen, D-MEJay Inslee, D-WABrian Baird, D-WAElton Gallegly, R-CAGary Miller, R-CAKen Calvert, R-CAMary Bono, R-CADarrell Issa, R-CADennis Hastert, R-ILFred Upton, R-MITim Walberg, R-MIJim Ramstad, R-MNScott Garrett, R-NJMichael Turner, R-OHJim Gerlach, R-PAJoseph Pitts, R-PARon Paul, R-TX

QUAKER -- 11D, 0RRush Holt, D-NJ

ROMAN CATHOLIC -- 12986D, 43RRaul Grijalva D-AZHarry E. Mitchell, D-AZEd Pastor, D-AZMike Thompson, D-CAGeorge Miller, D-CANancy Pelosi, D-CAEllen Tauscher, D-CAJerry McNerney, D-CAAnna Eshoo, D-CADennis Cardoza, D-CAJim Costa, D-CAXavier Becerra, D-CAHilda Solis, D-CADiane Watson, D-CALucille Roybal-Allard, D-CAGrace Napolitano, D-CALinda Sanchez, D-CAJoe Baca, D-CALoretta Sanchez, D-CAJohn Salazar, D-COJohn Larson, D-CTJoe Courtney, D-CTRose DeLauro, D-CTJim Marshall, D-GADan Lipinski, D-ILLuis Gutierrez, D-ILJerry Costello, D-ILPhilip Hare, D-ILPeter Visclosky, D-INJoe Donnelly, D-INBrad Ellsworth, D-INCharlie Melancon, D-LAMike Michaud, D-MERichard Neal, D-MAJames McGovern, D-MAMartin Meehan, D-MAEdward Markey, D-MAMichael Capuano, D-MAStephen Lynch, D-MABill Delahunt, D-MABart Stupak, D-MIDale Kildee, D-MIJohn Dingell, D-MIBetty McCollum, D-MNJames Oberstar, D-MNGene Taylor, D-MSWilliam Lacy Clay Jr., D-MOCarol Shea-Porter, D-NHFrank Pallone, D-NJBill Pascrell, D-NJAlbio Sires, D-NJTim Bishop, D-NYCarolyn McCarthy, D-NYJoseph Crowley, D-NYNydia Velazquez, D-NYCharles Rangel, D-NYJose Serrano, D-NYKirsten Gillibrand, D-NYMichael R. McNulty, D-NYMaurice Hinchey, D-NYMichael Arcuri, D-NYBrian Higgins, D-NYCharlie Wilson, D-OHMarcy Kaptur, D-OHDennis Kucinich, D-OHTimothy Ryan, D-OHPeter DeFazio, D-ORRobert Brady, D-PAPatrick Murphy, D-PAChris Carney, D-PAPaul Kanjorski, D-PAJohn Murtha, D-PAMichael Doyle, D-PATim Holden, D-PAJason Altmire, D-PAJoe Sestak, D-PAPatrick Kennedy, D-RIJim Langevin, D-RIRuben Hinojosa, D-TXSilvestre Reyes, D-TXCharlie Gonzalez, D-TXNick Lampson, D-TXHenry Cuellar, D-TXPeter Welch, D-VTJames Moran, D-VADavid Obey, D-WIRick Renzi, R-AZDan Lungren, R-CAGeorge Radanovich, R-CADevin Nunes, R-CAEdward Royce, R-CABrian Bilbray, R-CAMichael Castle, R-DEGinny Brown-Waite, R-FLConnie Mack IV, R-FLIleana Ros-Lehtinen, R-FLLincoln Diaz-Balart, R-FLMario Diaz-Balart, R-FLPhil Gingrey, R-GARay LaHood, R-ILSteve King, R-IABobby Jindal, R-LADave Camp, R-MIJoe Knollenberg, R-MIThaddeus McCotter, R-MIKenny Hulshof, R-MOJeff Fortenberry, R-NEJon Porter, R-NVFrank LoBiondo, R-NJChris Smith, R-NJMichael Ferguson, R-NJPeter King, R-NYVito Fossella, R-NYJohn McHugh, R-NYJim Walsh, R-NYWalter Jones, R-NCVirginia Foxx, R-NCPatrick McHenry, R-NCSteve Chabot, R-OHJean Schmidt, R-OHJohn Boehner, R-OHPatrick Tiberi, R-OHJohn Sullivan, R-OKPhil English, R-PATim Murphy, R-PAKevin Brady, R-TXMichael McCaul, R-TXDoc Hastings, R-WAPaul Ryan, R-WI

SEVENTH-DAY ADVENTIST -- 21D, 1RRoscoe Bartlett, R-MDSheila Jackson Lee, D-TX

UNITARIAN -- 11D, 0RPete Stark, D-CA

UNITED CHURCH OF CHRIST -- 20D, 2RMark Kirk, R-ILThelma Drake, R-VA

UNAFFILIATED -- 66D, 0RMark Udall, D-CONeil Abercrombie, D-HIJohn Olver, D-MAJohn Tierney, D-MAEarl Blumenauer, D-ORTammy Baldwin, D-WI


Sources: Albert Menendez "109th Congress: Religious Affiliations" and Congressional Quarterly profiles of new members of the 110th Congress.Does not include result of Dec. 12 runoff election in Texas' 23rd Congressional District.

Grouped by State - Senators>

Religion in the Senate, By State and By Faith c. 2006 Religion News Service(n: new member)

ALABAMARichard Shelby (R) PresbyterianJeff Sessions (R) Methodist

ALASKATed Stevens (R) EpiscopalianLisa Murkowski (R) Roman Catholic

ARIZONAJohn McCain (R) EpiscopalianJon Kyl (R) Presbyterian

ARKANSASMark Pryor (D) ChristianBlanche Lincoln (D) Episcopalian

CALIFORNIADianne Feinstein (D) JewishBarbara Boxer (D) Jewish

COLORADOWayne Allard (R) ProtestantKen Salazar (D) Roman Catholic

CONNECTICUTChristopher Dodd (D) Roman CatholicJoseph Lieberman (D) Jewish

DELAWAREJoseph Biden (D) Roman CatholicThomas Carper (D) Presbyterian

FLORIDABill Nelson (D) EpiscopalianMel Martinez (R) Roman Catholic

GEORGIASaxby Chambliss (R) EpiscopalianJohnny Isakson (R) Methodist

HAWAIIDaniel Inouye (D) MethodistDaniel Akaka (D) United Church of Christ

IDAHOLarry Craig (R) MethodistMichael Crapo (R) Mormon

ILLINOISRichard Durbin (D) Roman CatholicBarack Obama (D) United Church of Christ

INDIANARichard Lugar (R) MethodistEvan Bayh (D) Episcopalian

IOWACharles Grassley (R) BaptistTom Harkin (D) Roman Catholic

KANSASSam Brownback (R) Roman CatholicPat Roberts (R) Methodist

KENTUCKYMitch McConnell (R) BaptistJim Bunning (R) Roman Catholic

LOUISIANAMary Landrieu (D) Roman CatholicDavid Vitter (R) Roman Catholic

MAINEOlympia Snowe (R) Eastern OrthodoxSusan Collins (R) Roman Catholic

MARYLANDBarbara Mikulski (D) Roman CatholicBenjamin Cardin (D) Jewish (n)

MASSACHUSETTSEdward Kennedy (D) Roman CatholicJohn Kerry (D) Roman Catholic

MICHIGANCarl Levin (D) JewishDebbie Stabenow (D) Methodist

MINNESOTANorm Coleman, (R) JewishAmy Klobuchar (D) Congregationalist (n)

MISSISSIPPIThad Cochran (R) BaptistTrent Lott (R) Baptist

MISSOURIChristopher Bond (R) PresbyterianClaire McCaskill (D) Roman Catholic (n)

MONTANAMax Baucus (D) United Church of ChristJon Tester (D) Church of God (n)

NEBRASKAChuck Hagel (R) EpiscopalianBen Nelson (D) Methodist

NEVADAHarry Reid (D) MormonJohn Ensign (R) Christian

NEW HAMPSHIREJudd Gregg (R) United Church of ChristJohn Sununu (R) Roman Catholic

NEW JERSEYFrank Lautenberg (D) JewishRobert Menendez (D) Roman Catholic

NEW MEXICOPete Domenici (R) Roman CatholicJeff Bingaman (R) Methodist

NEW YORKCharles Schumer (D) JewishHillary Clinton (D) Methodist

NORTH CAROLINAElizabeth Dole (R) MethodistRichard Burr (R) Methodist

NORTH DAKOTAKent Conrad (D) UnitarianByron Dorgan (D) Lutheran

OHIOGeorge Voinovich (R) Roman CatholicSherrod Brown (D) Lutheran (n)

OKLAHOMAJames Inhofe (R) PresbyterianTom Coburn (R) Baptist

OREGONRon Wyden (D) JewishGordon Smith (R) Mormon

PENNSYLVANIAArlen Specter (R) JewishBob Casey (D) Roman Catholic

RHODE ISLANDJack Reed (D) Roman CatholicSheldon Whitehouse (D) Episcopalian (n)

SOUTH CAROLINALindsey Graham (R) BaptistJim DeMint (R) Presbyterian

SOUTH DAKOTATim Johnson (D) LutheranJohn Thune (R) Protestant

TENNESSEELamar Alexander (R) PresbyterianBob Corker (R) Protestant (n)

TEXASKay Bailey Hutchison (R) EpiscopalianJohn Cornyn (R) Church of Christ

UTAHOrrin Hatch (R) MormonRobert Bennett (R) Mormon

VERMONTPatrick Leahy (D) Roman CatholicBernard Sanders (I) Jewish (n)

VIRGINIAJohn Warner (R) EpiscopalianJim Webb (D) Protestant (n)

WASHINGTONPatty Murray (D) Roman CatholicMaria Cantwell (D) Roman Catholic

WEST VIRGINIARobert Byrd (D) BaptistJay Rockefeller (D) Presbyterian

WISCONSINHerbert Kohl (D) JewishRuss Feingold (D) Jewish

WYOMINGCraig Thomas (R) MethodistMichael Enzi (R) Presbyterian


BAPTIST (1 D, 6 R)Robert Byrd, D-WVCharles Grassley, R-IAMitch McConnell, R-KYThad Cochran, R-MSTrent Lott, R-MSTom Coburn, R-OKLindsey Graham, R-SC

CHRISTIAN (no denom.) (1 D, 1 R)Mark Pryor, D-ARJohn Ensign, R-NV


CHURCH OF GOD (1 D)Jon Tester, D-MT



EPISCOPALIAN (4 D, 6 R)Blanche Lincoln, D-ARBill Nelson, D-FLEvan Bayh, D-INSheldon Whitehouse, D-RITed Stevens, R-AKJohn McCain, R-AZSaxby Chambliss, R-GAChuck Hagel, R-NEKay Bailey Hutchison, R-TXJohn Warner, R-VA

JEWISH (10 D, 1 I, 2 R)Dianne Feinstein, D-CABarbara Boxer, D-CAJoseph Lieberman, D-CTBenjamin Cardin, D-MDCarl Levin, D-MIFrank Lautenberg, D-NJCharles Schumer, D-NYRon Wyden, D-ORHerbert Kohl, D-WIRuss Feingold, D-WIBernard Sanders, I-VTNorm Coleman, R-MNArlen Specter, R-PA

MORMON (Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints) (1 D, 4 R)Harry Reid, D-NVMichael Crapo, R-IDGordon Smith, R-OROrrin Hatch, R-UTRobert Bennett, R-UT

LUTHERAN (3 D)Byron Dorgan, D-NDSherrod Brown, D-OHTim Johnson, D-SD

METHODIST (5 D, 8 R)Daniel Inouye D-HIDebbie Stabenow, D-MIBen Nelson, D-NEJeff Bingaman, D-NMHillary Clinton, D-NYJeff Sessions, R-ALJohnny Isakson, R-GALarry Craig, R-IDRichard Lugar, R-INPat Roberts, R-KSElizabeth Dole, R-NCRichard Burr, R-NCCraig Thomas, R-WY

PRESBYTERIAN (2 D, 7 R)Thomas Carper, D-DEJay Rockefeller, D-WVRichard Shelby, R-ALJon Kyl, R-AZChristopher Bond, R-MOJames Inhofe, R-OKJim DeMint, R-SCLamar Alexander, R-TNMichael Enzi, R-WY

PROTESTANT (no denom.) (1 D, 3 R)Jim Webb, D-VAWayne Allard, R-COJohn Thune, R-SDBob Corker, R-TN

ROMAN CATHOLIC (16 D, 9 R)Ken Salazar, D-COChristopher Dodd, D-CTJoseph Biden, D-DERichard Durbin, D-ILMary Landrieu, D-LABarbara Mikulski, D-MDEdward Kennedy, D-MAJohn Kerry, D-MAClaire McCaskill, D-MORobert Menendez, D-NJBob Casey, D-PAJack Reed, D-RIPatrick Leahy, D-VTPatty Murray, D-WAMaria Cantwell, D-WATom Harkin, D-IALisa Murkowski, R-AKMel Martinez, R-FLSam Brownback, R-KSJim Bunning, R-KYDavid Vitter, R-LASusan Collins, R-MEJohn Sununu, R-NHPete Domenici, R-NMGeorge Voinovich, R-OH

UNITARIAN (1 D)Kent Conrad, D-ND

UNITED CHURCH OF CHRIST (3 D, 1 R)Daniel Akaka, D-HIBarack Obama, D-ILMax Baucus, D-MTJudd Gregg, R-NH

Sources: Albert Menendez "109th Congress: Religious Affiliations" and Congressional Quarterly profiles of new members of the 110th Congress

Update Through 2010

New Congress Reflects Overall U.S. Religious Landscape

Kevin Eckstrom, Religion News Service

The religious makeup of the incoming 111th Congress roughly matches the overall American religious landscape, with over representation among Jews and Mormons, according to new analysis by the nonpartisan Pew Forum on Religion & Public Life.

Just over half (55 percent) of House and Senate members who will take office on Jan. 6 are Protestants, compared to 51 percent of the U.S. population. The second-largest group, Catholics, make up 30 percent of lawmakers, compared to 24 percent of all Americans.

Among Protestants in the House and Senate,

Catholics (30 percent)

Baptists (12 percent),

Methodists (11 percent),

Presbyterians (8 percent),

Episcopalians (7 percent) and

Lutherans (4.5 percent).

No Religion (1 percent)

2 Buddhists

1 Muslim

Like the nation as a whole, the proportion of mainline Protestant members in Congress has fallen in recent decades. Methodists, for example, made up nearly one in five lawmakers in 1961.

Episcopalians and Presbyterians have seen similar drops, while Lutherans have remained relatively steady.

Catholics, meanwhile, have grown from 19 percent in 1961 -- the same year John F. Kennedy took office as the nation's first Catholic president -- to 30 percent today. Catholics make up a larger share of the Senate (37 percent) than the House (21 percent).

Jews make up 8.3 percent of the new Congress, compared to just 1.7 percent of the general population. Mormons, too, account for 2.6 percent of Congress but 1.7 percent of the general population.

The 111th Congress will see the return of two Muslims (Democrats Keith Ellison of Minnesota and Andre Carson of Indiana) and two Buddhists (Democrats Hank Johnson of Georgia and Mazie Hirono of Hawaii) who were all elected to the House during the 110th Congress.

The Pew analysis said no Hindu has ever been elected to Congress, although a Sikh, Rep. Dalip Singh Saund, represented California for three terms beginning in 1957. Only one member of Congress, Rep. Pete Stark, D-Calif., is a professing nonbeliever; five members did not specify a religious affiliation in data collected by Congressional Quarterly.

Posted by Sarah Pulliam on December 22, 2008 3:54PM

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