More than four-fifths of surveyed Americans believe that freedom of religion is an important aspect of a “healthy American society,” according to a poll by Rasmussen Reports and Summit Ministries.
In findings announced Tuesday, the report found that 67% of respondents said freedom of religion is “very important to a healthy American society,” while 15% said it was “somewhat important to a healthy American society.”
Some 9% of respondents said they believe freedom of religion was either “not very important” or “not at all important” to a “healthy American society,” while 9% said they were unsure.
Party affiliation only offered slight variance, as 86% of Republican respondents said freedom of religion is very important or somewhat important, while 83% of Independents and 79% of Democrats also responded that it was very or somewhat important.
The poll also found that 50% of Americans believe that churches and faith-based charities should not be required by law to hire people who oppose their religious beliefs, while 20% of Americans say they should be required, and 30% of Americans were not sure.
Summit President Jeff Myers said in a statement included in the announcement that he believed the findings showed “that the American people overwhelmingly support the continued protection of the Constitutional right of freedom of religion.”
“Yet, leaders in Washington, D.C., are aggressively pushing forward on legislative measures such as the mislabeled Equality Act, which specifically strips away religious freedom protections,” stated Myers.
“In an era of hyper-partisanship, freedom of religion retains broad, bi-partisan support among Democrats, Republicans and Independents.”
The poll drew from a sample of 1,000 likely voters in the United States, being conducted June 16-17 and with a margin of error of +/- 3 percentage points.
Earlier this month, the United States Supreme Court issued a unanimous ruling in which they conclude that a Christian foster agency could not be forced to place kids in same-sex households.
Known as Fulton v. City of Philadelphia, the high court ruled city officials were wrong to quit working with Catholic Social Services of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia for refusing on religious grounds to place children with same-sex couples.
“Government fails to act neutrally when it proceeds in a manner intolerant of religious beliefs or restricts practices because of their religious nature,” wrote Chief Justice John Roberts for the court.
“The refusal of Philadelphia to contract with CSS for the provision of foster care services unless it agrees to certify same-sex couples as foster parents cannot survive strict scrutiny, and violates the First Amendment.”