Jewish Support for Tea Party Grows
Jewish voters have long leant to the left as a strong Democrat voting bloc. But new studies from Steven Windmueller of the Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion suggest that some may now be expanding their political horizons as far as the tea party and its sympathizers, reports The Jewish Daily.
An Internet survey conducted by Windmueller found that 42 percent of Jews found the tea party movement “refreshing.” Windmueller acknowledged that his sample of more than 2,300 participants was not necessarily representative of the American Jewish population at large. He noted, though, that this figure was indicative of a trend that there is “a distinctive Jewish conservative voice emerging on Israel-related matters and an array of domestic and social issues.”
A separate public opinion report from the Pew Research Center also indicated that Jews are becoming more receptive to tea party ideals. While only 15 percent of Jewish respondents claimed to “agree” with the tea party, 35 percent had no opinion.
These statistics indicate that there is a substantial Jewish voting bloc that could have votes – and political contributions – up for grabs should the right tea party candidate come along.
Michele Bachmann hopes to be this candidate. She called Obama’s two-state solution to the Israel-Palestine conflict “shocking” at the Faith and Freedom Conference in June. She has also bought up ads on Jewish websites and issued a slew of robo-calls in key primary states, to accuse President Barack Obama of not standing up for Israel and decrying his plans for peace in the Middle East.
Whether Bachmann can win the support of a Jewish faction is still to be seen, but the notion that substantial numbers of Jews may be shifting to the right could mean big gains for the GOP come 2012. “Jews are experiencing the same things other Americans are: a combination of fear, anger, and uncertainly about their own future,” Windmueller said.