Poll: Religious rights of US Christians most valued

WASHINGTON  — A new poll finds that Americans place a higher priority on preserving the religious freedom of Christians than for other faith groups. And they rank Muslims as the least deserving of the protections.

The poll by The Associated Press and the NORC Center for Public Affairs Research finds that solid majorities believe it is extremely or very important for the U.S. to uphold religious freedom in general.

However, the percentages varied dramatically when respondents were asked about specific faith traditions.

Eighty-two percent in the poll said religious liberty protections are important for Christians, compared with 61 percent who said the same for Muslims. About seven in 10 said preserving Jews' religious freedom was important, while 67 percent said so of Mormons.