The latest poll shows American Jews are finally realizing that Obama’s policies towards Israel do not line up with their views (hat tip Tevi Troy). A poll byMcLaughlin & Associates and Pat Caddell commissioned by Secure America Now found that Jewish support for Obama’s reelection is underwater:
65% claim they voted for President Obama in 2008, 64% have a favorable opinion of the President and 63% approve of the job he is doing as President; however, only two in five (43%) would vote to re-elect President Obama. The plurality (48%) would consider someone else and 9% are undecided.
This is a fascinating poll with lots more information than can be summarized in a blog post. You can read the whole thing here. The sample may be skewed a little since 77% of Jews voted for Obama in 2008, not the 65% claimed by those sampled. Whether that is sample bias or selective memory among the respondents is unclear. Nor are all of the trends consistent:
About two-thirds (64% to 31%) have a favorable opinion of President Obama.
Nearly two-thirds (65% to 30%) approve of the job President Obama is doing regarding America’s defense and security.
By a 2 to 1 ratio (56% to 25%), the majority believes things in the U.S. are headed off on the wrong track.
Generally speaking, when deciding their vote for President, the most important issue category is economic (44%) followed by social (31%), foreign affairs (14%), moral (4%) and other local issues (1%).
So despite having a favorable opinion of Obama, American Jews believe the US is on the wrong track, probably for economic reasons. Here are some more tidbits.
In April of last year, President Obama had a +11 job approval rating on handling America’s relations with Israel (50% to 39%). Now his job rating is … upside down (43% to 50%).
Considering that President Obama has proposed a return to the 1967 borders, dividing Jerusalem, and allowing the right of return for Palestinian Arabs to Israel, two-thirds (67% to 24%) are concerned about President Obama’s policies towards Israel if he were re-elected.
Four in five (81%) are against Israel being forced to return to its pre-1967 borders, which were susceptible to attack.
Nearly three-quarters (73%) believe Jerusalem should remain the undivided capital of Israel. Only 8% thinks the United States should force Israel to give parts of Jerusalem, including Christian and Jewish holy sites, to the Palestinian Authority.
An overwhelming majority (88% to 5) agrees with the position that before the Palestinian Authority is given their own country, they must first recognize Israel’s right to exist as a Jewish state.
Fox News (20%) and CNN (18%) are the most trusted news organizations to report international news and Israel fairly.
Regarding the Palestinian-Israel conflict, 43% is unsure who President Obama favors. Among those with an opinion, more Jewish voters think he favors the Palestinians (31% to 26%).
The sample views Prime Minister Netanyahu more favorably than Obama, kind of like their most recent speeches to Congress:
American Jewish voters are strongly favorable to Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu (65% favorable to 20% unfavorable).
All in all, I find this poll reassuring that Jewish voters are getting over their reflexive support for Democrats regardless of their policies.
UPDATE: According to Greg Sargent and Adam Serwer, this is a “laughably bogus poll” because in addition to the (possible) sample skew I noted, the “questions in the poll are phrased in as leading a manner as possible” (hat tip William Jacobson). And as a commenter pointed out, saying you would consider another candidate is not the same as saying you would vote for Obama.
I disagree that the poll is bogus, though some findings show some bias. Most of the questions were straightforward and not leading:
Do you approve or disapprove of the job Barack Obama is doing regarding America’s defense and security?
Regarding the Palestinian-Israeli conflict would you say that President Obama favors Israel, or favors the Palestinians?
The good news is, you can read the pollster’s detailed findings and decide for yourself if it is believable.