Polling shows Sanders, Clinton tied in high favourability among Jewish voters

Hillary Clinton speaking as Sen. Bernie Sanders listens during the Democratic presidential candidate debate at the University of New Hampshire in Durham, Feb. 4, 2016. (Andrew Harrer/Bloomberg)

Hillary Clinton speaking as Sen. Bernie Sanders listens during the Democratic presidential candidate debate at the University of New Hampshire in Durham, Feb. 4, 2016. (Andrew Harrer/Bloomberg)

WASHINGTON (JTA) – Democratic presidential candidates Bernie Sanders and Hillary Clinton have virtually the same high approval ratings among American Jews.

Gallup said in a March 24 article on its website that an aggregation of Jewish respondents to its daily polling showed Jewish voters favour Sanders, an Independent Vermont senator, at 61 per cent favourable, and Clinton, a former secretary of state, at 60 per cent.

Sanders’ unfavourable ratings are 30 per cent and Clinton’s are 35 per cent.

Among Republican presidential candidates, only Ohio Gov. John Kasich has higher favourable than unfavourable ratings among Jewish voters, 45 per cent to 28 per cent. Kasich is last among candidates with delegates accumulated in the primaries.

The GOP front-runner, Donald Trump, a real estate magnate, scores 72 per cent unfavourable to 24 per cent favourable, and Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, 72 per cent unfavourable to 20 per cent favourable.

Gallup did not publish a margin of error, but said it had aggregated “a large sample of interviews” with Jewish respondents since January.

In the same article, Gallup said that among the general population, 24 per cent agreed that the United States should move its embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem and recognize Jerusalem as Israel’s capital, 20 per cent disagreed and 56 per cent agreed that they “don’t know enough to have an opinion.”

That was based on polling from March 9 to 14. Gallup did not publish a margin of error, but generally its daily election polling has a margin of error of 3 percentage points.

All three Republican presidential candidates have said they would recognize Jerusalem as Israel’s capital.

Separately, a poll by the Institute for Social Policy and Understanding found that Jews and Muslims are more likely to identify as Democrats rather than Republicans.

The January poll by the institute, which assesses issues of concern to American Muslims, found that Muslims are 44 per cent likely to declare as Democrats, 41 per cent as Independents and just 6 per cent as Republicans. Jews, the poll found, are 50 per cent likely to declare as Democrats, 29 per cent as Independent and 16 per cent as Republicans.

Catholics are equally split among the three categories – 34 per cent Democrats, 34 per cent Republicans and 31 per cent Independents – and Protestants identified as Republican at 47 per cent, Democrat at 25 per cent and Independent at 24 per cent.

The poll’s margin of error was 7 points for Muslims and Jews. Its data for Catholics and Protestants appeared to be culled from other polls.

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