Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama is stepping up his effort to correct the misconception that he's a Muslim.
Obama tried to set the record straight at a rally to kick off a weeklong campaign for the South Carolina primary coming up on Saturday.
Obama says he's been going to the same Christian church for almost 20 years. He says he was sworn into office using the family Bible. He says he repeats the pledge of allegiance to the United States flag in the Senate.
Obama is referring to a chain e-mail that suggests he's hiding his Islamic roots and may be a terrorist. It says he was sworn into the Senate on the Quran and turns his back on the flag during the pledge.
Obama's campaign blanketed South Carolina churches yesterday with literature that touted Obama's Christian faith.
On Sunday, Obama spoke at the Atlanta church where Martin Luther King Junior launched the civil rights movement, Democratic presidential hopeful Barack Obama today called for unity to overcome America's "moral deficit."
In a visit steeped in symbolism -- coming a day before the King holiday -- Obama evoked the civil rights leader's legacy to a packed house of 2,000 mostly black worshippers.
Obama also used the pulpit at the Ebenezer Baptist Church to take blacks to task for failing to embrace gays, immigrants and Jews.
The congregation rose to its feet as Obama harkened back to the civil rights struggle that he said had made his campaign possible.
The Illinois senator offered what has become a familiar campaign message centering on hope. And he drew raucous applause as he referred to his own modest upbringing.
Obama said South Carolina's primary will be absolutely critical to his campaign.
In a radio interview with the Reverend Jesse Jackson, the Illinois senator was quick to point out that he won the majority of Nevada's Democratic delegates. Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton edged him out in the popular vote in Nevada's caucuses.
Obama said immigration, education and the economy will be important issues in South Carolina. The Democratic primary here is Saturday.