American Muslim Poll 2017

Report & Key Findings

  • American Muslim Poll 2017: Muslims at the Crossroads offers a timely and groundbreaking look into the American Muslim community. From early on in a deeply divisive presidential election cycle until today, American Muslims have been at the center of heated social and political debates. One byproduct...

  • This is a summary of the key findings of ISPU’s American Muslim Poll 2017: Muslims at the Crossroads, a poll which offers a timely and groundbreaking look into the American Muslim community. From early on in a deeply divisive presidential election cycle until today, American...

Poll Launch Recording

Supplementary Documents

CLICK HERE TO VIEW LAST YEAR’S FINDINGS FROM AMERICAN MUSLIM POLL 2016.

Graphs

Click here to download all 41 graphs from 2017. Click here to download all 13 graphs from 2016.

Muslims are the most ethnically diverse and youngest faith community surveyed.

Figure 10: Bar graph showing that Muslims are America's youngest faith community
Figure 11: Bar graph showing that Muslims are the most ethnically diverse faith community
Figure 1: Bar graph showing that Muslims are the most likely faith group to have been born outside the U.S.
Figure 13: Bar graph showing that Muslims are the most likely faith group to report low income
Figure 14: Bar graph showing that Black and Arab Muslims are most likely to report low income
Figure 16: Bar graph showing that 9 in 10 american identify as "straight"
Figure 17: Bar graph showing that Muslim education level similar to Christians
From Table 1 (Figure 1): Bar graph showing that Muslims are less likely than Jews and Christians to contribute to their faith institutions

Muslims face similar social challenges as other American faith groups.

Figure 19: Bar graph showing that Muslims and Catholics attend religious services with equal frequency
Figure 20: Bar graph showing that, unlike peers, young Muslims are as likely as older Muslims to say religion is important
Figure 22: Bar graph showing that Muslims are less likely to experience racism from other Muslims than from the general public
Figure 23: Bar graph showing that, across faiths, Black Americans are equally likely to experience racism from their own faith community
Figure 24: Bar graph showing that domestic violence plagues most faith communities equally, and that Muslims are most likely to report violence to their faith leader
Figure 31: A bar graph showing that Muslims are more likely than other American faith groups to report community racial tensions

Muslims are less politically engaged, but equally invested in the country’s welfare.

Figure 1: Bar graph showing that of all the faith groups surveyed, Muslims are most satisfied with the country
Figure 2: Bar graph showing that, of all the religious groups surveyed, Muslims and Jews were the least likely to favor a Trump presidential win
Figure 3: Bar graph showing that Muslims are the least likely faith community to vote
Figure 4: Pie graph showing that dissatisfaction with choices and indifference, not theology, were the top reasons for Muslim's low voter turn-out
Figure 5: A bar graph showing that younger Muslims are less likely to vote than their older counterparts
Figure 6: Bar graph showing that Asian Muslims are more likely to vote than White, Black, and Arab Muslims
From Table 1 (Figure 2): Bar graph showing that Muslims are as likely to donate to domestic as international relief
Table 1: Chart showing which houses of worship are the most likely recipients of faith-based giving across faith groups

Muslims disproportionately feel the negative effect of the current political climate.

Figure 9: Bar graph showing that Muslims and the general public are split on Muslim need to condemn terrorism
Figure 25: Bar graph showing that Muslim families are the most likely to face bullying
Figure 26: Bar graph showing that 1 in 4 Muslim bullying incidents involves a teacher
Figure 27: Bar graph showing that Muslims are the most likely faith community to experience religious discrimination
Figure 29: Bar graph showing that Muslims are twice as likely as other faith groups to face secondary screening at the U.S. border
From Table 3 (Figure 1): Bar graph showing that Muslims and Jews experience the most fear and anxiety post 2016 election
Table 3: Chart showing that Muslims and Jews experience the most fear and anxiety after the 2016 election

Muslims respond to prejudice with resilience and solidarity.

Figure 7: Bar graph showing that Muslims are the most likely faith group to support the Black Lives Matter Movement
From Table 2 (Figure 1): Bar graph showing that economy and bigotry continue to top Muslim priorities
From Table 3 (Figure 2): A bar graph showing that Muslims respond to prejudice with resilience
Table 2: Chart showing that the economy and bigotry continue to top Muslim priorities

Muslim women defy stereotypes, suffer, and resist the most.

Figure 8: Bar graph showing Black, Asian, and young Muslims are the most supportive of the Black Lives Movement
Figure 15: Bar graph showing that Muslim women are more likely than Muslim men to be middle class
Figure 18: Bar graph showing that Muslim women surpass Muslim men in education
Figure 21: Bar graph showing that Muslim women and men have similar mosque attendance
Figure 28: Bar graph showing that Arab, young, and female Muslims are the most likely to experience religious discrimination
Figure 30: Bar graph showing that Muslim women are more likely than Muslim men to suffer and take action post election
Figure 30 (Part 1): A bar graph showing that Muslim women are more likely than men to suffer post election
Figure 30 (Part 2): A bar graph showing that Muslim women are more likely than men to take action post election

Why This Report?

From early on in a deeply divisive presidential election cycle until today, American Muslims have been at the center of heated social and political debates. One byproduct of this increased salience is an uptick in negatively charged rhetoric and discriminatory acts. Conversely, there has also been an outpouring of support and solidarity (particularly following the election of Donald Trump) aimed not just at Muslims already in the United States, but also toward those who yearn to make America their home. Common across all of these discourses, actions, and reactions, however, is the frequent relegation of Muslims to subjects of consideration. Rarely are Muslims active participants in political dialogue, and even rarer are their attitudes and behaviors systematically examined. The Institute for Social Policy and Understanding (ISPU) American Muslim Poll 2017: Muslims at the Crossroads helps narrow this wide knowledge gap.

In line with ISPU’s core mission, this analysis of the 2017 poll data is designed to help public officials, civil society stakeholders, and other interested parties gain a multi-dimensional understanding of the American Muslim community. We do this in three ways. First, we provide key demographic figures that complement the sparse data on American Muslims. These include tallies of age, race/ethnicity, education, income, and sexual orientation. Second, moving beyond these raw numbers, we elaborate relationships of interest between key variables. These preliminary observations on, for example, education by gender and discrimination by race/ethnicity, will make for more informed contemporary conversations and future research. Third, we compare American Muslim responses with those of other major American faith (and nonfaith) groups, including American Jews, Catholics, Protestants, and non-affiliated Americans (religious communities such as Hindus, Buddhists, and others outside the four largest are too small a percentage of the general public to include in our analysis). Such a cross-group analysis is truly exceptional because few surveys exist that simultaneously gather meaningful data on this mix of populations. This comparison thus provides an empirical foundation for discussions on Muslim “exceptionalism.”

The report is organized into four sections corresponding to different levels of analysis. Starting with the broadest view, the first section is dedicated to issues of intercommunal relations and American Muslim political engagement. Thereafter, we examine intracommunal issues, focusing on race relations and institutional engagement. Next, we turn to the family, presenting statistics on domestic violence and bullying. Finally, we elaborate individual-level experience, highlighting positive and negative fallout from the election.

I refer to ISPU's American Muslim poll when I give public talks on Islamophobia. It helps to nuance the picture of American Muslims and to challenge unfair stereotypes concerning Islam's compatibility with the U.S. Keep up the outstanding work!

– Todd Green, Associate Professor of Religion at Luther College

Meet the Research Team

Dalia Mogahed

Director of Research, Institute for Social Policy and Understanding

Michael Lance

Michael Lance

Data Analyst

PhD Education Evaluation and Research

Youssef Chouhoud

Youssef Chouhoud

Report Co-Author

PhD Candidate and Provost’s Fellow at University of Southern California’s Political Science and International Relations Program

Maryam Jamali

Maryam Jamali

Research Manager, Institute for Social Policy and Understanding

Sarrah Buageila

Sarrah Buageila

Project Manager, Institute for Social Policy and Understanding

Stephen McGrath

Stephen McGrath

Communications Manager, Institute for Social Policy and Understanding

Karam Dana

PhD Interdisciplinary Near and Middle Eastern Studies, University of Washington

Assistant Professor, University of Washington School of Interdisciplinary Arts and Sciences

David Dutwin

David Dutwin

Executive Vice President and Chief Methodologist, SSRS

2016 Conference Chair, AAPOR Executive Council

Research Scholar, Institute for Jewish and Community Research

Rachel Gillum

Rachel M. Gillum

PhD Political Science, Stanford University

Visiting Scholar, Stanford University

Fellow, Association for Analytic Learning about Islam and Muslim Societies

Amaney Jamal

Amaney Jamal

PhD Political Science, University of Michigan

Edwards S. Sanford Professor of Politics, Princeton University

Director, Mamdouha S. Bobst Center for Peace and Justice

Director, Workshop on Arab Political Development

President, Association of Middle East Women’s Studies (AMEWS)

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