The Democratic National Committee passed a resolution Saturday claiming nonreligious people are "the largest religious group" within the party, noting these people "overwhelmingly share the Democratic Party's values."
The resolution came forward at the DNC's summer meeting in San Francisco, and it was pushed through with unanimous consent. The lobbying group Secular Coalition of America praised its passage as the first time a major American political party has "embraced nonbelievers," according to Fox News.
The resolution states that nonreligious people make up 25 percent of the national population and 35 percent of people under the age of 30. Of these, 70 percent voted for Democrats in the 2018 midterm elections, the document notes. It continues that these people "have often been subjected to unfair bias and exclusion in American society," asserting that many religious Americans have sought to infringe on their rights.
"Those most loudly claiming that morals, values, and patriotism must be defined by their particular religious views have used those religious views, with misplaced claims of ‘religious liberty,' to justify public policy that has threatened the civil rights and liberties of many Americans, including but not limited to the LGBT community, women, and ethnic and religious/nonreligious minorities," the resolution says.
The resolution concludes that the Democratic Party is an "inclusive organization that recognizes that morals, values, and patriotism are not unique to any particular religion" and resolves that "religiously unaffiliated Americans are a group that, as much as any other, advocates for rational public policy based on sound science and universal humanistic values and should be represented, included, and heard by the Party."
Michael Wear, the former faith outreach director for President Barack Obama, wrote on Twitter that the DNC's resolution overlooks the fact that Protestants are most likely the largest group within the Democratic Party, and only appear to be diminished in numbers because of their different denominations.
"I just want to be clear," he wrote. "This is both politically stupid, but also, just stupid on a fundamental level that transcends electoral politics."
The nonreligious have made gains in the Democratic Party not just at the ballot box, but also in the congressional ranks. After the 2018 midterm elections, the percentage of nonreligious lawmakers in Congress rose from 2 to 3 percent, making the 116th Congress the least religious in United States history.