Shalom Life | April 19, 2014

Israelis Trust Romney more than Obama

Poll reveals Israeli attitudes toward 2012 US Presidential Candidates

By: Sammy Hudes

Published: June 15th, 2012 in News » World

Israelis Trust Romney more than Obama

A survey commissioned by the Begin-Sadat Center for Strategic Studies (BESA), the Bar-Ilan University Center for International Communication and the Anti-Defamation League revealed that Israelis generally trust Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney more than current US President Barack Obama, according to the Jerusalem Post.

The survey was prepared for a conference on American-Israeli relations to be held Sunday and Monday at the BESA Center at Bar-Ilan University. It was conducted by Maagar Mochot between May 28 and June 1 among 540 adult Jewish Israelis and had a 4.5 per cent margin of error.

Approximately 70 per cent of Israelis said they have a positive attitude toward the US, which they believe to be a loyal ally of Israel. Over 90 per cent believe that in an existential crisis or “moment of truth,” the US would come to Israel’s aid.

The survey also found that 45 per cent of Israeli Jews described Obama as “friendly” and six per cent as “very friendly.” Only 12 per cent characterized the president as “unfriendly” and three per cent as “very unfriendly,” while 32 per cent placed him as “neutral.”

Despite this, most Israelis felt Romney would do a better job than Obama of promoting Israel’s interests. Of those who responded, 29 per cent said Romney would better promote Israel’s interests while 22 per cent said Obama would. Just under half said they did not know or would not answer the question.

Since 2009, the percentage of Israelis who said they view Obama “positively” has dropped from 54 to 32 per cent, while those who view him “very unfavorably” has risen from 14 to 23 per cent.

Forty-one per cent of Israelis said they are “unsatisfied” or “very unsatisfied” with Obama’s policies on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and 53 per cent of Israelis said they feel the president has erred in his policy response to the “Arab Spring.” Thirty-eight per cent believe Obama has weakened the status of the US in the Middle East.

Should Romney get elected, 30 per cent said they thought he would improve US-Israel relations, while 26 per cent thought they would remain the same and six per cent indicated that they would get worse.

But should Obama gain a second term, 68 per cent thought the president would maintain the status quo with Israel, while eight per cent believe he would improve ties and 15 per cent that he would worsen them.

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