Poll: Israelis prefer Obama to Republican candidates

Sunday, March 04, 2012 |  Ryan Jones

A new poll reveals that despite their consistent distrust of Barack Obama, Israelis actually prefer the current president to any of his potential Republican challengers.

Conducted by the Dahaf Institute, the survey asked a sampling of 500 Israeli Jews to rate Obama compared individually to the Republican presidential frontrunners. The results were as follows:

  • Obama 32%, Romney 29%
  • Obama 31%, Gingrich 27%
  • Obama 34%, Santorum 21%
  • Obama 34%, Ron Paul 24%

When Obama first took office, his support among Israelis was barely in double digits. Nearly one year after his election, just 12 percent said they believed Obama was a true friend of Israel.

Obama did poll better among Israelis later in his presidency, but even at the height of his "popularity," a strong 60 percent majority still said he was no friend of the Jewish state.

As recently as last summer, a mere 25 percent of Israelis viewed Obama as a president their nation could rely on.

Meanwhile, Mitt Romney, Newt Gingrich and Rick Santorum have been busy loudly declaring their undying dedication to Israel, begging the question, why would Israelis prefer the untrustworthy Obama to these men?

Perhaps having been burned by Republican presidents in the past - Bush Sr. imposed the "Oslo" peace process and the PLO upon Israel, and Bush Jr. was the driving force behind the Gaza pullout - Israelis now believe a president who is clearly not their ally will actually be able to do less damage.

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