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December 9, 2016 / 9 Kislev, 5777

Posts Tagged ‘voters’

Survey: Jewish Voters Give Hillary Lowest Support of All Democratic Nominees Since 1980

Saturday, September 17th, 2016

The American Jewish Committee (AJC) has issued a survey of American Jewish opinion, conducted by the research company SSRS based on telephone interviews from August 8 to 28, with a national sample of 1,002 Jews over age 18 and a margin of error of +-3.57%, showing the Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton enjoys the support of 61% of the voters who identify themselves as Jewish. And although her opponent, Republican nominee Donald Trump, only gets 19% of the Jewish vote, Hillary’s figure is the lowest scored by a Democrat among Jewish voters since Jimmy Carter only took 45% of the Jewish vote against Ronald Reagan in 1980.

The highest Jewish vote in the 20th century went to FDR in 1940 and 1944, 90% each time; LBJ also took 90%, in 1964; JFK received 82% of the Jewish vote in 1960; Humphrey 81% in 1968; Bill Clinton 80% in 1992; Gore 79% in 2000; and Obama 78% in 2008 and 69% in 2012.

Even George McGovern, with 65%, did better with the Jewish voters than Hillary has been doing. Trump, by the way, is doing about as well as GW Bush did in 2000. Bush later took 24% of the Jewish vote against Kerry in 2004, McCain 22% in 2008, and Romney 30% in 2012. (Source: Jewish Virtual Library)

Only 51% of the American Jews surveyed identify as Democrats. 26% are Independent and only 18% Republican. The Green Party attracts 2% of the Jewish vote, the Libertarians, despite their admiration for the strong ideas of one Russian Jewish lady, only attract 1% of US Jews to their ranks.

US Jews are still more left- than right-leaning: 51% are Liberal or lean Liberal, 24% Conservative or lean Conservative. 23% say they are moderates.

How about that famous Jewish optimism about the future of America? Not a whole lot of it is left, apparently. When asked if their children would be better or worse off than their parents when they grow up, 39% said the kids better get ready for a worse future; 29% believe in a better future; 27% don’t see a big change coming in either direction.

A whopping 57% of the American Jews questioned identified anti-Semitism on US campuses a problem, 23% of them think it’s a very serious problem at that. Only 6% don’t see it as a problem at all.

Here’s a kind of nice surprise, although in an underhanded sort of way: only 15% of the Jews asked are married to a non-Jew. But wait, don’t celebrate yet: only 35% are married to a Jew, either from birth or a convert, and a full 49% are not married. In other words, close to half of the American Jewish community is probably not involved in promulgating the Jewish community.

52% of the Jewish respondents have never been to Israel (that percent goes up when you exclude the Orthodox – of which 85% have visited Israel), 21% have only been once. So that when they were asked what they think of the fact that Orthodox Judaism is the only denomination recognized by Israel as an official form of Judaism, and 48% said it “Weakens Israel’s ties with American Jews,” it’s likely most of them have not forged their opinions based on personal experience.

And when they were asked what they consider the most important change necessary in Israeli Judaism, and 41% answered, “Securing legal recognition of equality for all streams of Judaism,” that answer, too, was provided based mostly on op-eds and Facebook posts. Likewise when 74% insisted “legal recognition should also be extended to non-Orthodox weddings, divorces, and conversions,” this opinion was mostly theoretical.

JNi.Media

Grass Roots Supporters Seek To Boost Trump’s Popularity With Jewish Voters

Wednesday, August 31st, 2016

With the presidential election just two months away, Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton and Republican nominee Donald Trump are pulling out all the stops to win over as many key demographic groups as they can.

Though relatively small compared to other groups, the American Jewish community, due to its outsized influence in politics and American culture, is seen as a significant factor by both campaigns.

Outside the official channels, some Trump supporters are seeking to make their own impact on the election and promise not to remain silent when it comes to Israel’s security and future.

The grass roots group Jews Choose Trump was formed in late July by financial adviser Carol Greenwald along with several partners, including Jewish activist and founder of JCCWatch.org Richard Allen.

Greenwald has a long history of Jewish community activism and says she lives by the biblical verse Isaiah 62:1, “For Zion’s sake I will not keep silent.” She said she was motivated to start the website JewsChooseTrump.org after becoming fed up with accusations by liberals that Trump was anti-Semitic.

“Trump is someone who’s worked with the Jewish community his entire life and…his daughter and son-in-law…are both observant Jews,” Greenwald said. “The smearing of Trump as anti-Semitic is just outrageous.”

Greenwald said JewsChooseTrump.org has steadily grown, with Jewish supporters of Trump from across the country signing up to express their solidarity and looking for ways to get involved.

“We’ve been overwhelmed by the velocity of social media in getting out our message of Jewish support for Trump,” said Allen, who’s been handling social media for the group. “We have over 40 states with activists who stand for Trump in their communities. Our Jews Choose Trump Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and website are on fire with activity. The use of this alternate unbiased network of social media sites has changed the dynamic in reaching Jewish Trump supporters.”

The support the group has gained comes despite some early negative issues for Trump.

During the Republican primary season, many prominent politically conservative Jews were hesitant about supporting Trump. In particular, some were concerned over statements Trump had made such as saying to a group of Jewish donors in December 2015 that he’s “a negotiator like you folks,” a remark some said played into Jewish stereotypes, and that he would be “neutral” in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

But after securing the nomination, the Trump campaign has focused on raising its level of support in the Jewish community with promises to overturn the Iran nuclear deal, recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel, fight the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement, and oppose any measures to impose or dictate borders on Israel.

“The Republican platform has [more] pro-Israel statements in it than any platform in American history and a lot of those changes were pushed by the Trump campaign,” Greenwald said.

Most troubling to Greenwald is Hillary Clinton’s support for the Iran nuclear deal, which was a key foreign policy goal of President Obama’s and in which Clinton played an early role when she was secretary of state.

“Most Jews love Israel and they worry about the security of their children and grandchildren. The Iran deal endangers this security,” she said.

The Iran deal apparently is a deal breaker for many, though not all, Jewish supporters of Israel who may not be crazy about Trump but who refuse to support Clinton.

Republican fundraiser Kenneth S. Abramowitz, a major Israel supporter, is backing Trump. “Anyone who supported the Iran deal [should be] automatically disqualified from political office in this country,” Abramowitz told JNS. “Negotiating with terrorists and providing them money during our state of war was providing material support for terrorism.”

On the other hand, Jewish billionaire hedge fund manager Seth Klarman, a major giver to pro-Israel causes who backed Jeb Bush, Chris Christie, and Marco Rubio during the primary season, has announced his support for Clinton.

While historically the American Jewish community has been heavily Democratic, presidential election trends in recent years indicate a small shift in support toward the Republican Party. In 2008, Barack Obama garnered 78 percent of Jewish voters, according to exit polls. Four years later, that number fell to 69 percent.

However, the decline of Jewish voter support for Obama may have been largely due to his personal clashes with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and may not directly translate into success for Trump.

Tevi Troy, a presidential historian and White House aide in the George W. Bush administration, said that while there has been a gradual increase of Jewish support for Republican presidential candidates, he’s “not sure what the Trump effect will be.”

A survey conducted by polling firm GBA Strategies among 500 Jewish voters in Florida from Aug. 4-8 found 67 percent support for Clinton versus only 23 percent for Trump. According to GBA Strategies, these voters prioritized “the economy, the environment, immigration policy, and the Supreme Court by large numbers over the issues of Israel or Iran.”

Despite the uphill battle in gaining more Jewish support for Trump, in a close election even a small number of voters in important states could swing the election to either candidate.

Of the more than 1,000 names registered on JewsChooseTrump.org, roughly 15 percent are from the area around Boca Raton, Florida, Greenwald said.

Home to one of the country’s largest Jewish communities, Florida is likely to play a key role in determining who wins in November. Greenwald says her group plans to contact people on the list in important battleground states like Florida, Ohio, and Pennsylvania and encourage them to speak out in favor of Trump by writing op-ed articles, handing out literature, and speaking at Jewish events in their community.

JNS

Sean Savage

Catching Up To Democratic Outreach, Trump Courts American Voters In Israel

Wednesday, August 17th, 2016

In early August, Israeli media reported that the campaign of Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump had launched outreach to an estimated 300,000 eligible American voters living in Israel.

The Trump campaign is working with the Israel branch of Republicans Overseas, an organization that works to reach American citizens abroad who can vote via absentee ballot.

The Trump campaign has reportedly hired former Yediot Aharonot reporter Tzvika Brot and other political and public relations experts in order to reach American voters in Israel.

“Our efforts to reach American voters living or visiting Israel prior to the election are primarily through the Republican Overseas efforts,” which has also been working with groups such as the Republican Jewish Coalition (RJC) on this front, said Bo Denysyk, a senior adviser for the Trump campaign’s Special Voter Groups attached to Trump Campaign Chairman Paul Manafort.

Denysyk explained to JNS that although the Trump campaign is making efforts to reach eligible U.S. voters in various foreign countries, it is placing a special priority on Israel.

In order to be able to vote, Americans abroad need to fill out a Federal Post Card Application (FPCA) and submit it to their local election office in the U.S. every year. Before an election, such voters will receive an absentee ballot by mail or electronically, depending on their state’s rules. Voters abroad vote in the state where they last lived before leaving the U.S.

As there are large Jewish communities in battleground states such as Ohio and Florida, Denysyk said the Trump campaign is particularly interested in targeting Americans in Israel who come from those states and “can possibly provide the winning margin” during the election. Republicans Overseas estimates there are about 10,000-12,000 Republicans from Florida in Israel

A report published in March by the Rothermere American Institute at the University of Oxford in the UK titled “America’s Overseas Voters: How They Could Decide the U.S. Presidency in 2016” notes past instances in which voters abroad made a difference in results in swing states, such as the famous case of the 2000 presidential election, in which overseas Florida ballots gave George W. Bush a narrow lead after the U.S. Supreme Court had stopped the state’s recount.

If the election had included the ballots that arrived after the Nov. 26 deadline, former vice president Al Gore would have won Florida – and the presidential election.

Professor Jay Sexton, former director of the Rothermere American Institute and co-author of the report, told JNS that efforts to reach U.S. voters in Israel “is a good move” because traditionally Republicans have had “inferior campaign infrastructure overseas” compared to the Democrats.

According to Sexton’s report, the comparable organization to Republicans Overseas on the Democrat side, Democrats Abroad, has traditionally had a more institutionalized relationship with the Democratic Party.

Alex Montgomery, communications director of Democrats Abroad, told JNS that the organization reaches out to its members in Israel and other countries “through e-mails and phone banking, reminding our members that they need to request their ballot to vote this year.”

“We will very shortly start running ads on social media across Israel to let potential voters know how they can vote and answer the many questions voters from abroad typically have about the voting process,” he said.

In Israel in particular, “there are tens of thousands of U.S. voters…so the impact in the U.S. can be considerable, particularly for Senate and House elections with tight races. And getting out the vote in Israel for Democratic candidates causes a ripple effect back home with U.S. voters who are influenced by their families and friends in Israel,” he added.

Meanwhile, Republicans Overseas is working to catch up to the Democrats on outreach to voters in foreign countries. Marc Zell, co-chairman of Republicans Overseas Israel and vice president of Republicans Overseas, recently acknowledged to the Jerusalem Post that outreach to American voters in Israel has begun late and has faced a lot of challenges. Nevertheless, he is optimistic about the project.

Alina Dain Sharon

Arab Primary Voters Dump Terror-Supporting MKs Zoabi, Ghattas

Friday, June 17th, 2016

MK Hanin Zoabi, whose National Democratic Assembly (Balad) party is one of the three partner factions making up the Joint Arab List, has been the most frequent candidate for removal both from the elections list and, as MK, from the plenum, as well as defendant in court, all owing to her vicious attacks on Israeli values and on Israeli public officials—including, most recently, cursing out and spitting on Arab police. Now, all who trust in the wisdom of the voters are entitled to a big high-five, as Zoabi has been pushed in the primaries for her faction’s list of Knesset candidates down to spot number 9, well outside the realistic expectations for the 21st Knesset, Makor Rishon reported Friday.

The Joint Arab List, which has one Jewish MK, is a new political creature, a coalition made up of four different parties whose only common denominator is the fact that they are Arab and appeal to the Arab Israeli voter. Hadash, the United Arab List, Balad, and Ta’al, which make up the third largest faction in the 20th Knesset, were, essentially, the brain child of then Foreign Minister Avigdor Liberman, who pushed for a higher vote threshold, requiring that a list gain close to four seats before it can claim any of its seats. Realizing that the new rule could wipe out the bulk of the Arab representation in the Knesset, the four parties, with communists, business leaders, ultra-nationalists and religious zealots, found a way to unite in order to stay alive. Ironically, Liberman’s own party, Yisrael Beiteinu, barely made it past the same threshold.

With the four factions sharing the 13 seats they were granted by the voter, it is unlikely for any one of them to get more than three or four MKs, so that Zoabi’s failure to get enough votes for the third or fourth spot in her faction means a resounding demotion by her party members.

But Zoabi did relatively well compared with her fellow Balad MK Basel Ghattas, who shared with her a much slammed ceremony honoring the families of Jerusalem terrorists who had died while murdering Jews. Ghattas was dropped to the 23rd spot, which is political death in the reality of Arab politics.

Another demoted Balad leader, also member of the honor guard to the killers, is Jamal Zahalka, who landed the fifth spot, which would only get him a seat should the Joint Arab List pick up between 18 and 20 mandates, a feat that would necessarily require direct involvement from Mohammed himself, if not an even higher authority.

Anonymous members of the Joint List told Makor Rishon they were pleased with the choices of Balad voters, who replaced their fanatical leaders with seemingly more pragmatic ones, including a woman, Nibin Abu Rahmoun, at the top of the list. The latest choices could revitalize the Balad faction as well as the entire Knesset list, possibly attracting one or two additional seats.

With MK Ghattas’ resounding defeat Balad voters have severed their ties to his uncle, former MK Azmi Bishara, who back in 2007 resigned from the Knesset through the Israeli Embassy in Cairo, following police investigation into his treasonous activities, aiding the enemy during wartime, passing information on to the enemy and contacts with a foreign agent, as well as laundering money received from foreign sources. With that shameful legacy out of the way, the new faces in Balad could devote themselves to improving the quality of life for Israeli Arabs.

David Israel

Advice to Clinton: Don’t Try to Placate Sanders’ Hard Left Voters

Thursday, June 9th, 2016

Even following Hillary Clinton’s historic victory in the primaries, there are some among the most radical Bernie Sanders supporters—let’s call them Sanderistas—who would actually like to see Donald Trump beat Hillary Clinton in the general election. Their “logic” is as follows: If Clinton wins, Sanders becomes just another loser. The Sanderistas become marginalized. And their leader’s quest for a political revolution ends with the election of yet another centrist, “establishment” Democrat.

However, if Trump beats Clinton, Sanders will claim to become the titular leader of the Democrat party, pointing to early polls showing that he would have beaten Trump, though these polls signify little about how he would have done in an actual head to head contest. (In my opinion, he would have suffered a devastating defeat comparable to those suffered by other left-wing candidates such as Mondale and Dukakis, though nothing is predictable with Trump as the Republican nominee). Moreover, were Clinton to lose, Sanders’ influence would increase within the party—and around the country—because the Sanderistas will take credit for Clinton’s defeat and insist that without them the Democrats can’t win a general election.

Other Sanderistas have put forward a more destructive rationale. As one of Sanders’ most prominent surrogates, the actress Susan Sarandon explained “[S]ome people feel that Donald Trump will bring the revolution immediately if he gets in, things will really explode.” Sarandon, who made the same case for Ralph Nader in the 2000 presidential election (and look how that turned out), is not the only Sanders supporter who feels that a Trump presidency could be the catalyst for the leftist political revolution promised by Sanders and his surrogates.

These hard left radicals, just like their anti-establishment counterparts on the extreme right, believe that the nomination system is rigged if they do not get their way. Ultimately, it’s unsurprising that Trump has seized on that sentiment and invited them to join forces in the quest for a revolution: “To all of those Bernie Sanders voters who have been left out in the cold by a rigged system of super delegates, we welcome you with open arms.”

As she struggles to unify the Democratic Party, however, Clinton should be wary: any effort to embrace the Sanderistas will backfire. They won’t vote for her anyway, unless she goes so far left as to fall off the political cliff. As CNN recently reported, “Sanders has inspired a movement, but it’s unclear whether he can control it. Or if he wants to… [M]any [of his supporters] insist they will not fall into line behind Hillary Clinton… They are taking seriously Sanders’ call for a political revolution, complicating any hope for quick unity with Clinton.” One such Sanderista is quoted as saying, “You can’t expose the corruption of the political system and then expect us to get behind that same political system.” Another threatens that “[i]f Bernie Sanders does not walk out of that thing as the nominee, we can guarantee you from that point on we’ll start the de-registration of the Democratic Party. They have a choice to make.”

Even if some Sanderistas were to rally to Clinton, their votes in swing states would not be enough to have a meaningful impact on the general election, especially in comparison to the support she would lose in the political center, which has little appetite for revolution. Moreover any appeasement of the far left will be welcomed by the Republican Party, who now fear that its centrist wing will defect in large numbers, and vote for Clinton, because they regard Trump as something of a kook. If Clinton embraces the Sanderistas, these voters will view the election as a contest between the kooky right and the equally kooky left. Given that choice, they will prefer their right wing kook to the left wing kook.

This is not to say that Clinton should not consider supporting reasonable programs just because they were advocated by Sanders. She already has, and should continue, to talk about reducing the gap between the rich and the poor, raising the minimum wage, rethinking trade agreements, holding Wall Street accountable, making college more affordable and other domestic economic fixes. She staked out that territory in her speech on Tuesday night and she should continue to try to appeal to reasonable Sanders voters, especially among the young.

However, there are two particular areas where the Sanders program would endanger Clinton’s electoral prospects. The first is domestic: she should not adopt Sanders economics of spending more that a reasonable budget would permit. Adopting some pie in the sky proposals that would add trillions of dollars to the budget and dramatically increase our national debt would be a gift to Trump. Americans don’t want to be debtors who mortgage their children’s future. We want reasonable spending that we can afford.

The second gift to Trump would be in the area of foreign policy, particularly with regard to the Middle East. Were Clinton to move away from support for Israel, it could hurt her electoral chances in several swing states. Americans in general admire and support Israel. They don’t want a president who would parrot the views of radical anti-Israel haters such as Cornel West and James Zogby, who falsely accuse Israel of being an apartheid state that sets up concentration camps and aims to annihilate Palestinians. Even many of Sanders’ young supporters, some of whom are critical of certain Israeli policies – especially with regard to the settlements – do not want the U.S. to adopt the West-Zogby anti-Israel approach. Sanders received his support from young people for his domestic policy, not his foreign policy (about which he knows little). He wandered into the morass of Mideast politics only to satisfy his hard left supporters who think in absurd packages: if you support the environment and higher minimum wages, then you must oppose Israel. That’s not the way centrist and independent voters think, and Clinton must reject that kind of radical “intersectional” thinking if she is to beat Trump in the fall.

So let Hillary be Hillary and not become Bernie. Let her look for guidance to the successful centrist politics of Barack Obama and Bill Clinton, rather than the failed revolutionary screeds of Bernie Sanders, Cornel West and Susan Sarandon. We are a centrist nation that has thrived without the turmoil that extremes– both left and right– bring to politics and governance. We don’t want to emulate Europe and South America, which often alternate between socialist and nationalist regimes– between the Red and the Brown. If she gets too close to the hard left politics of Sanders most extreme “Bernie or bust” zealots, she may get burned in the general election – and so will our nation.

Alan M. Dershowitz

New US-Funded PA Reality Show Teaches Candidates How to Buy Votes to Win Elections

Sunday, June 5th, 2016

And ……. we’re back! Cast your ballot for the candidate of YOUR choice for only 80 cents, voters! Who will become the NEXT.President.of.PALESTINE!’

Sound a little weird?

Well yeah, maybe, but this wildly popular reality television show, ‘The President’ has been going on for two seasons now here in the Middle East, and it’s the closest thing to real elections that Arabs in the Palestinian Authority have had in more than a decade.

PA leader Mahmoud Abbas has made sure of that, after having been “elected” 11 years ago. His presumed five year term hasn’t ended yet.

This show, is being broadcast on the Ma’an satellite network, funded primarily by a U.S. State Department grant to the NGO ‘Search for Common Ground.’ It was originally aired in 2013, and supported by a two-year grant from the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

The show reaches viewers in PA-controlled areas of Judea, Samaria and Gaza as well as elsewhere in the Arab world. And it has an impact, quietly teaching the concepts of how a democratic election really operates.

In the first season, 1,200 candidates ages 25–35 from Judea, Samaria, Gaza, and Israel auditioned to compete in an elimination-style series of trials designed to test their political skills. They were called upon to act as a PA ambassador in a foreign country, managing a large corporation for a day, answering hard-hitting questions on live TV on various political, social, and economic issues affecting Palestinians, exhibiting sufficient self-discipline to be “on-call” and “on-message” 24/7 while on the campaign trail, and keeping their cool in an intense, televised political debate.

In this second season which just culminated this past Thursday (Congratulations to Wa’ad Qannam!), 24 contestant were winnowed out from 1,200 people who sat down to take a series of exams on politics in the Palestinian Authority, international law, development and gender equality.

It’s also an unparalleled learning opportunity for the contestants: at the end of each week the competitors must face a panel of judges to explain what they learned after having shadowed a PA minister or business leader for the entire week prior — and then also tell the judges how they would improve on their “mentor’s” performance.

Both male and female candidates run in the election for leadership and hold rallies while cameras are rolling.

(The top three political platforms this season: Boycott Israel, seize half of Jerusalem for the capital of ‘Palestine’ and reconcile the two estranged ‘halves’ of the PA — Hamas-controlled Gaza with Ramallah-controlled parts of Judea and Samaria.)

The audience is drawn from viewers who can vote via text message at 80 cents per text. Votes from judges and the audience determine who make it from one round to the next – but it’s only the audience who decides in the finale.

Because there are no caps on how many times a voter can send a text, money plays a big part in how far a candidate can get.

A NY Times article pointed out exactly how much money a number of the candidates paid to buy votes to better guarantee their democratic victory. One candidate’s family complained that 24,000 votes they bought and had receipts for had disappeared.

Just like in a real third world kleptocracy.

The point of the show is to groom young citizens in the Palestinian Authority to take on leadership roles in the future, NGO co-director Suheir Rasul told the Associated Press.

Ma’an general director Ra’ed Othman called the show “a message for the Palestinian leadership,” and said bluntly, “Elections are the solution. Democracy is the solution.”

However you get your votes.

Hana Levi Julian

Americans Frantic over Threat of Islamic Terror

Tuesday, October 28th, 2014

An overwhelming majority of 86 percent of likely American voters “consider radical Islamic terrorism a threat to the United States,” according to a new Rasmussen telephone survey conducted last week.

The poll followed two deadly attacks in Canada.

The respondents also conceded that not all “lone wolf” terrorism can be prevented. The results obviously indicate that American also don’t seem to have much faith that terrorism by an organized group can be prevented.

Their sense of being threatened is 11 points higher than expressed in a similar poll in January.

Half of the sample of likely voters said that the threat from radical Islam is “very serious,” while only three percent dismissed it as not being a threat at all.

Tzvi Ben-Gedalyahu

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/americans-frantic-over-threat-of-islamic-terror/2014/10/28/

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