What is driving the Jewish vote?

May 24, 2019


Data from a new poll of the Jewish electorate confirms that the Democratic Party remains the political home of Jewish American voters. The poll also demonstrates that Jewish voters determine which candidate to support based on domestic policy issues, as opposed to foreign policy or Israel. Finally, the poll highlights that – for the first time – a majority of Jewish American voters feel less secure due to President Trump, whom they blame for increased attacks on the Jewish community.

The poll, conducted by Greenberg Research on behalf of the non-partisan Jewish Electorate Institute (JEI), found that the overwhelming majority of American Jewish voters continue to identify as Democrats and there has been zero increase in Jewish support for Republicans since JEI’s last poll in October 2018. The poll also indicates that 73 percent of Jewish voters feel less secure than they did two years ago, 71 percent disapprove of Trump’s handling of anti-Semitism, and 59 percent of Jewish voters hold President Trump at least partially responsible for the recent attacks on synagogues in Pittsburgh and Poway.

This hard data proves that President Trump’s claims of American Jews abandoning the Democratic Party are entirely false. American Jews vote their values and strongly disapprove of President Trump’s handling of nearly every issue. The top priorities of Jewish voters are access to affordable health care, protecting Medicare and Social Security, and combatting anti-Semitism. The lowest priority of Jewish voters – for a second year in a row – are issues related to Israel. Overwhelming disapproval of President Trump, rising anti-Semitism, and the Republican policy agenda will drive the Jewish vote in 2020, and the work of JDCA has never been more important.

This poll proves that by advocating for our values and mobilizing the Jewish vote, JDCA will play a pivotal role in 2020, helping to win back Democratic control of the Senate and White House, and increasing the Democratic majority in the House of Representatives. 

More on the poll

  • Read JDCA Board Chairman Ron Klein’s analysis of the poll.
  • Watch JDCA’s video highlighting key findings of the poll.
  • Read JDCA’s press release responding to the poll.
  • Read this Washington Post column by conservative writer Jennifer Rubin about the JEI poll and what it portends for the Jewish vote in 2020. Rubin writes: “Finally, Trump’s effort to win over Jewish voters by demonizing Democrats (who oppose his policies that most American Jews find abhorrent) is a ridiculous failure, as are the efforts of groups such as the Republican Jewish Coalition to convince American Jews that Republicans have their interests at heart. They might as well be arguing that Muslims are better served by Trump’s party.”

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Shabbat Shalom,

Ron Klein,
Chair, Jewish Democratic Council of America

Halie Soifer
Executive Director, Jewish Democratic Council of America