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Larger portion of Americans has no religious affiliation

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Posted at 1:00 PM, Oct 17, 2019
and last updated 2019-10-17 13:00:48-04

(AP)-- The portion of Americans with no religious affiliation is rising significantly, in tandem with a sharp drop in the percentage that identifies as Christians.

That's according to new data released Thursday by the Pew Research Center.

Based on telephone surveys conducted in 2018 and 2019, Pew said that 65% of American adults now describe themselves as Christian, down from 77% in 2009. Meanwhile, the portion that describes their religious identity as atheist, agnostic or "nothing in particular," now stands at 26%, up from 17% in 2009.

Both Protestant and Roman Catholic ranks are losing population share, according to Pew. It said 43% of U.S. adults identify as Protestants, down from 51% in 2009, while 20% are Catholic, down from 23% in 2009.