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Sunday, 15 March 2015

Poll: British Jews Overwhelmingly back Netanyahu

When Netanyahu went to speak in front of Congress, his statement that he spoke for all Jews got some Jews angry. As Prime Minister of the Jewish State, that statement might bear more weight than some might think. A recent survey seems to imply that at least for the majority of British Jews this may be true.

An exclusive poll for the Jewish Chronicle  has revealed that two thirds of British Jews who have a view on the Israeli election would vote for Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. When asked who they preferred, 40% said they did not know, but when given a choice between Netanyahu or Herzog, 41% answered Netanyahu and 18% said Herzog. The support for Netanyahu included all age groups and geographic regions of the UK.

When asked which party they would support if they could vote in next week’s ballot, 67 per cent of those with an opinion said they would choose the Likud. Just 22 per cent said they would vote for the Zionist Union.

Naftali Bennett’s Jewish Home and Yair Lapid’s Yesh Atid each received around 3%  of votes, with Avigdor Lieberman’s Yisrael Beiteinu received 1%, and Moshe Kahlon’s Kulanu received .7%.

The poll also investigated Anglo-Jewry’s level of interest in Israeli politics. There was an almost 50-50 split between those who followed political matters in the Jewish state and those who did not.

The level of interest extended to for 32 % of people surveyed said they were “quite a bit” interested, 18% were“very much” interested. 36% were “not very much”  interested, and 14% expressed no interest at all.
On the whole, British Jewish men were more interested in Israeli politics than women.

These results are compelling when compared to another recent poll which showed that the majority of British Jews do not see a future for themselves in Europe. It could be that they view Israel as a sanctuary and would prefer that it be a strongly guarded safe haven with a government that is considered to be hawkish.

It certainly points to a difference between Diaspora Jews who overwhelmingly prefer Netanyahu, as compared to Israelis, who give Herzog and Livni the advantage.

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