Democratic Registration Edge Among Jewish Voters Grows 9 Points

If I've said it onceI'vesaiditathousandtimes: Jewish voters are not moving to the Republican Party en masse. In fact, the latest polling indicates that American Jews are moving even closer to the Democratic Party, not away from it, according to a survey from the American Jewish Committee. David Goldenberg has the details over at the NJDC blog.

Earlier today, the American Jewish Committee (AJC) released its 2006 Annual Survey of American Jewish Opinion showing that the number of Jewish voters identifying themselves as Democrats has increased from 48 percent to 54 percent since the last mid-term election in 2002.  At the same time, the number of Jewish voters identifying themselves as Republicans has decreased from 18 percent in 2002 to 15 percent in 2006.

"These numbers reaffirm what we have been saying for so long.  Jewish voters just don't feel comfortable with the Republican Party," said NJDC Executive Director Ira Forman.  "Most recently, the Republican Jewish Coalition (RJC) spent a million dollars in a 'devoid of truth' campaign to divide the Jewish community and convince Jewish voters to switch their party affiliation.  All they have to show for it is a three percent decrease in the number of Jews who consider themselves to be Republicans and a six percent increase in the number of Jews who are now Democrats.  If this is what you get with $1 million in RJC ad buys, I hope that they spend $2 million in 2008."

The AJC survey also shows that the number of Jewish voters who identify themselves as liberal has increased from 37 percent in 2002 to 42 percent in 2006.  In contrast, the number of Jewish voters who identify themselves as conservative has decreased from 29 percent to 25 percent during the same time period.

No major surprises here, though claims that Jewish voters would leave the Democratic Party as a result of Joe Lieberman's defeat in the party's Senate primary in Connecticut in August were hasty, at the least, and more likely wholly without merit.

As long as the Democratic Party continues to fight for progressive issues like civil rights, civil liberties, education, the environment, etc., it's just not going to be the case that Jewish voters are going to leave the party -- regardless of the posturing of the Bush administration on terrorism and Israel.

Tags: Democrats, Jewish Voters, Republicans (all tags)

Comments

9 Comments

Re: Democratic Registration Edge Among Jewish Vote

The Dobsonites scare even conservative Jews.  

And on Israel---I feel, and I know other Jews that feel the same, that the US hasn't been a good friend to Israel lately.  As one of my friends put it "friends don't let friends bomb drunk."  And Israel was hammered.

Going into Iraq has made both the US and Israel less safe.  Not pushing restraint during the Hezbollah war has made both the US and Israel less safe.  

by bosdcla14 2006-10-23 06:47PM | 0 recs
Canard 101

Jewish voters are Democrats. Don't try to tell me otherwise.

And this is why Gore's VP choice was catastrophic.

Lieberman added little to Gore's vote in Fla. because Jewish voters were already Gore's. A conservative Baptist who could add cracker votes from the panhandle would have probably won the election.

And of course Holy Joe didn't just not help the ticket, he actively hurt it by playing kissy-face with Dick Cheney during the debate and by being the world's crappiest VP/attack dog in history.

The two things the running mate is supposed to, he screwed up. And he added very few net votes in Florida.

Bloodying him up in the CT primary was good. But he has not yet suffered enough.

Beat Holy Joe
Beat him bad

by stevehigh 2006-10-23 06:57PM | 0 recs
I can't count how many arguments

I've had in that regard, primarily on balanced political sites. The  right wing posters love to claim Lieberman was solely responsible for adding 3-5% to Gore in Florida 2000. It's purely pulled out of their ass but that's typical of mathematical analysis on political sites. They love the sound of i,t to pretend Florida is otherwise non-competitive in a presidential year. No doubt it's also been spewed on right wing radio.

Correct, the Florida Jewish vote would have gone to Gore regardless, upwards of 80%. Hell, Kerry received 80% in '04 while losing the state by 5%, as opposed to Gore winning it slightly, minus the lost votes via punch card and otherwise.

I haven't looked it up recently but I think Gore received 87 or 88% of the Jewish vote in Florida 2000. So that's entirely consistent with Kerry's number, if you amend via the national preference change from '00 to '04, Gore winning narrowly while Kerry lost by roughly 3%. In other words, if Kerry had won the national popular vote his Florida percentage among the Jewish voters would have been very close to Gore's 87 or 88%. There is a natural pull in that regard, national preference dumped atop individual states and demographics. I get annoyed when that is unreocgnized or denied.

The Jewish vote is about 5% in Florida. So even if you ignore logic and say Lieberman was worth the full difference between 80% and 88%, what are we talking about? A fraction of one percent of the total statewide vote.

Of course, in Florida 2000 that could have been all the difference in the presidency but I agree with stevehigh it was a catastrophic choice. Substituting favorite son Bob Graham would have meant at least 2 to 4 points, and altered global history.

by Gary Kilbride 2006-10-23 08:56PM | 0 recs
Don't tell me Loserman = Entire Jewish population

I'm jewish.

I've never liked Lieberman.
I thought that his religion was great for diversity -- i thought the type of conservative sway to the dems always held them back.

Its sad to see a jewish member of congress goe but I hope joe goes.

I've never respected most views on 'jewish' issues anyway -- I fully back supporting Israel but I hoped that a clearheaded congress person would get both sides to the table ala Clinton.

Nope.

Its that type of attitude which makes me dislike Lieberman and I hope he gets thrown out by any opponent.

Every single time we talk about Iran their president denys Israel's existance and calls for their distruction -- they own Hezbollah and its a touch situation but I want a senator that actual respect both the jewish religion and keeps true to some core political beliefs.

-- MrMacMan

by MrMacMan 2006-10-23 07:38PM | 0 recs
Re: Democratic Registration Edge Among Jewish Vote

I've said it 1,000 times. I hate Joe Lieberman and I have always hated him. He came off like such a schmuck with Dick Cheney and ever since he has been nothing but a War Monging, Pro-Censorship, Republican in Dem Clothing.

by JewishJake 2006-10-23 07:50PM | 0 recs
Jewish Republicans--that's kind of an oxymoron

I'm Jewish, if non-practicing. And I've never trusted Jewish Republicans. Something about a Jew being a Republican just doesn't seem right to me. It's not unlike an African-American being a Republican. What's up with that?

The values and practices of the Republican party--even in its more traditional and less corrupt and incompetent days--go against all traditional Jewish values as I view them, such as charity, compassion, community, fairness, responsibility, honesty, tolerance, and genuine family values. There is nothing remotely Republican about any of these values, especially in this party's current incarnation.

And that whole "rugged individual" aspect of more traditional libertarian Republicanism, while admirable in certain ways, similarly goes against Jewish community-based values. Kinky Friedman notwithstanding (and he's just a parody of himself), Jews don't go for the lone cowboy on the range thing.

In my opinion, Jewish Republicans are basically about assimilating into the white upper class suburban Christian society and value system that they desperately want to be a part of and which to this day defines the soul of the Republican party (Bush I is far more representative of the true GOP than is Bush II or his gang of fools). It's not about morals or ideology, but rather about money, power and class.

And I don't trust or like people who place these values above all else.

Nor do I trust or like the more recent variety of Jewish Republicans who were attracted to the GOP for its aggresive and militaristic neocon agenda. These are typically addle-brained pantywaist momma's boys (and you know we've got a bunch of those in the faith) who still wet their beds and are desperate to appear to be tough and manly IDF warrior wannabees. These are Joe's boys, which makes me like them even less.

And, being originally from Israel, I know for a fact that actual Israelis who've actually served in the IDF (which is far less glamorous than the neocons make it out to be) despise them for the fakes that they are. Picture J Pod or Noah G (sounds like a really bad Jewish rap group--yo yo yo, check out my brass matzoh balls, there be Hebrews in da house!).

The Democratic party is the natural home for not only Jews, but also African-Americans, Hispanics, women, gays, immigrants, other minorities, labor, small farmers, intellectuals, artists, environmentalists and basically anyone who's not just out for themselves. It is America's natural majority party. And it's about to reclaim that rightful title.

by kovie 2006-10-23 08:26PM | 0 recs
Jews in Congress

I'm Jewish, and Joe Lieberman is hardly representative of the Jews in Congress. By and large, Jews in the House and Senate are extremely liberal and progressive, people like Russ Feingold, Barbara Boxer, Carl Levin, Frank Lautenberg, Jan Schakowsky, Tom Lantos, Henry Waxman, and so many others. Lieberman is an outlier, and especially so on the war in Iraq. Most Congressional Jews opposed the war in Iraq, with a small minority led by Joe Lieberman voting for it (with none of the other Jews gung-ho about actually going in, just pressured by lobbyists to support the resolution).

To the media and to too many Jewish voters, Joe Lieberman has become the face of Jews in American politics. We need to reorient that face to other, more progressive Jews in Congress.

by ahf8 2006-10-23 08:57PM | 0 recs
Re: Jews in Congress

That's an honorable bunch of people you listed, but I am not sure Tom Lantos belongs among them. He represents a very liberal California district, and on most issues is in step with his constituents, but he has been bellicose in relation matters Middle Eastern and is leading the charge to get people on board against Iran.

One hates to say this, because in general, his record on human rights has been extraordinarily good ... and then he trips over what he seems to percieve as threats to Israel. We can't have US policy in lockstep with the governing Israeli right.

by janinsanfran 2006-10-24 08:08AM | 0 recs
Re: Democratic Registration Edge Among Jewish Vote

Even here in the south, even here in Hageeland, where we suffered a huge week-end-long "Night For Israel" just two weeks before election day and the weekend before early voting began, I am seeing a softening of support for RW Republicanism among southern conservative Jews.  It is all anecdotal, but combined with the local surge in private Jewish Democratic activism, including things like donations and blockwalking that I see working with my local party, I feel confident saying that the Jewish flirtation with RW Christofascism is probably coming to an end, at least here in So TX.

by dksbook 2006-10-24 05:46AM | 0 recs

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