Majority of Jews back Biden, call antisemitism 'serious' problem, poll finds

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A majority of American Jews support President Biden’s reelection campaign and say they trust him over former President Trump to combat the “serious” problem of rising antisemitism, according to a survey published Monday.

The American Jewish Committee’s (AJC) 2024 survey of American Jewish Opinion – conducted March 12 to April 6 – shows Jews largely have not soured on the president, despite some rhetoric suggesting Biden’s policies on Israel and Gaza could hurt him among Jewish voters.

In a hypothetical matchup held today, 61 percent say they would support Biden, while 23 percent say they would support Trump. Ten percent say they would support “someone else.”

The results are similar to the share of respondents in the poll who say they voted for Biden in 2020 (64 percent) and who say they voted for Trump in 2020 (21 percent), suggesting there hasn’t been much movement in their positions.

The same poll shows Jews are increasingly concerned with rising antisemitism in the U.S., especially since the Oct. 7 attacks on Israel, but trust Biden more than Trump to address it.

Nearly all Jews (93 percent) say antisemitism in the U.S. is either a “serious problem” (56 percent) or “somewhat of a problem” (37 percent), with 7 percent saying it’s not a problem.

Most Jews (87 percent) also say in the poll that, “since the Hamas terrorist attacks on Israel on October 7,” they think antisemitism in the U.S. has “increased a lot” (55 percent) or has “increased somewhat” (33 percent). Only 1 percent say antisemitism has decreased, and 12 percent say it’s stayed the same.

At the same time, American Jewish adults feel increasingly connected to Israel, with 85 percent saying they think it’s important for the U.S. to support Israel after Oct. 7 and 57 percent saying they feel more connected to Israel or their Jewish identity since the attacks.

“Despite rising antisemitism making Jews feel less safe, American Jews are defiantly proud about who they are and even more connected to Israel,” said AJC CEO Ted Deutch, a former member of Congress who left in 2022 to lead the non-partisan global advocacy group for the Jewish people.

Amid heightened concerns among U.S. Jews, 55 percent say Biden would be better at combatting antisemitism in the U.S., compared to 20 percent who say Trump would be better. Fifteen percent say neither, and 9 percent are not sure.

On which major party presidential candidate would be better for the U.S.-Israel relationship, 49 percent say Biden, 25 percent say Trump, 13 percent say neither, and 13 percent say they’re not sure.

The poll shows Biden also enjoys a high approval rating (56 percent) for his overall job as president, with 24 percent approving “strongly” and 32 percent “somewhat.” Forty percent disapprove, including 16 percent “somewhat” and 24 percent “strongly.”

Asked about Biden’s handling of the Israel-Hamas war, approval drops to 48 percent, with 13 percent “strongly” approving and 35 percent “somewhat” approving. Forty-three percent disapprove, including 20 percent “somewhat” and 23 percent “strongly.”

The AJC survey included 1,001 Jewish adults and has a margin of error of +/- 3.9 percentage points.

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