Obama Doesn't Mention God Enough, Says Prayer Caucus

Religious lawmakers say the president intentionally omits talk of God.

Dec. 9, 2010— -- President Obama doesn't mention God frequently enough in his speeches, a group of religious House Republicans said in an open letter to the president, chastising him for skipping over mention of the "Creator," especially in a recent overseas address.

Forty-two members of the Congressional Prayer Caucus complained in a letter sent to the White House Monday that in a speech delivered last month in Indonesia, the president substituted the U.S.'s religious-themed national motto for a more secular alternative.

The letter suggests the speech was not an isolated incident but part of a series of remarks that "establishes a pattern" of the president intentionally excluding talk of God from his public remarks.

In a Nov. 10 speech at the University of Jakarta, Obama compared the diversity of Indonesia with that of the United States, saying, "In the United States, our motto is 'E pluribus unum' -- out of many, one."

The president was wrong. Though "E pluribus unum" appears on the Great Seal of the United States and was for centuries an unofficial motto, in 1956 Congress established "In God We Trust" as the official motto.

In addition to the misstep in Indonesia, the caucus, which includes arch-partisan Rep. Michele Bachmann, R-Minn, accuses the president of intentionally editing God out of other recent speeches, too.

"Additionally, during three separate events this fall, when quoting from the Declaration of Independence, you mentioned we have inalienable rights, but consistently failed to mention the source of those rights. The Declaration of Independence definitively recognizes God, our Creator, as the source of our rights. Omitting the word 'Creator' once was a mistake, but twice establishes a pattern," reads the letter.

The prayer caucus members who signed the letter, however, neglected to mention that in the Indonesia speech, Obama mentioned God four times.

Obama Gives God 4 Mentions in Indonesia Speech

"Across an archipelago that contains some of God's most beautiful creations, islands rising above an ocean named for peace, people choose to worship God as they please. Islam flourishes, but so do other faiths. Development is strengthened by an emerging democracy. Ancient traditions endure, even as a rising power is on the move," the president said.

The prayer caucus members say that by failing to mention God, the president is "removing one of the cornerstones of our secure freedom."

"By making these kinds of statements to the rest of the world, you are removing one of the cornerstones of our secure freedom," the caucus wrote in its letter. "If we pull the thread of religious conviction out of the marketplace of ideas, we unravel the tapestry of freedom that birthed America."

The White House did not return calls from ABC News seeking comment.

In August, a Pew poll found that 43 percent of Americans did not know President Obama was an avowed Christian, and 18 percent believed he was a Muslim. The president does not attend church as often as his predecessor did -- Obama has frequented the pews only a handful of times since coming into office. However, he has repeatedly said he is Christian, believes in God and prays frequently.