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Exit Polling Shows No Evidence of Jewish Voters Switching to GOP ID in FL

David Streeter — February 1, 2012 – 11:14 am | Election 2012 | Polls Comments (2) Add a comment

Nate Silver wrote in The New York Times’ 538 blog last night that there is little evidence supporting claims that Jewish voters in FL are switching their support to the Republican Party. Silver wrote:

There has been some speculation that Democrats could struggle to hold the Jewish vote in 2012….

But there is no sign tonight of Jewish voters switching their registration over to the Republican side in Florida. According to early exit polls, just 1 percent of voters in tonight’s Republican primary identified as Jewish. That’s down from 3 percent in the Florida Republican primary in 2008, which also might mean that Jewish Republican voters in the state are not terribly enthusiastic about this group of candidates.

The Huffington Post’s Sam Stein wrote:

For all the campaign attention paid this past week to Israeli politics and—towards the end—Mitt Romney’s handling of kosher meal budgeting in Massachusetts, few if any Jews appeared to vote in the Florida GOP primary.

According to Fox News exit poll, just one percent of the state’s primary voters identified as Jewish. Thirty-one percent said they were Catholic and 59 percent said they were protestant or ‘other Christian.’ Four percent said ‘something else.’

The Jewish Journal’s Shmuel Rosner wrote:

A week ago I wrote that the most interesting question about the Florida Jewish vote is that ‘If the percentage of Republican Jews is higher this year than in 2008; if more than 4-5% of the Republican Florida voters are Jewish.’ The answer to this question is now clear: a resounding no. According to exit polls only 1% of Republican voters were Jewish - that’s not more but rather less Jewish voters than the number of 2008. 

... I don’t know how Tuesday’s results could be interpreted in ways favorable to Jewish Republicans. Clearly, the Jews of Florida aren’t moved by the candidates, they aren’t moved by the party, and they aren’t moved by Obama’s policies - not enough to switch party registration and vote for their candidate of choice.

The Forward’s Nathan Guttman also explained:

Exit polls could not provide data regarding the split in Jewish votes between Romney and Gingrich but it is largely believed that Romney had a stronger showing among Jewish Republicans. His supporters in Florida put together three events in recent weeks and all were well attended.

What exit polls do show, however, is that only 1% of Republican primary voters identified as being Jewish, down from 3% in 2008.

That means there was no shift of Jewish voters to the Republican side.

And Guttman’s Forward colleague Josh Nathan-Kazis—who reported directly from Florida prior to the primary—surmised:

... [F]ewer Jewish voters in the primary could correlate to a lack of enthusiasm among Jews for the Republican field.


Jerry_Leigh | February 6, 2012 – 11:11 am

Why would Jewish voters switch ton the Republicans, when their odds-on favorite to secure the Presidential nomination believes in deicide? The Book of Mormon contains the verse, Mormon (7:5), which states: “Know ye that ye must come to the knowledge of your fathers, and repent of all your sins and iniquities, and believe in Jesus Christ, that he is the Son of God, and that he was slain by the Jews, and by the power of the Father he hath risen again, whereby he hath gained the victory over the grave; and also in him is the sting of death swallowed up.” Note the “slain by the Jews” phrase.

Amy | February 9, 2012 – 6:14 pm

Actually, Mitt and the Mormon thing are the least of my worries. I am more concerned about the attacks on women’s rights and gay rights and science. Heck all four of the candidates have come out against Planned Parenthood and contraception. Two of the four remaining candidates don’t believe in evolution.

As I told Congressman Sessions, Jews care about more than just Israel. We tend to be pretty liberal when it comes to social issues and are very pro-science and education. We are also concerned about separation of church and state. Republicans state in their platform that the separation of church and state is a myth. They are trying to rewrite the history books in Texas to reflect that opinion. They are anti-science and anti-education and anti-environment. What in that list of craziness speaks to Jews.

It is no wonder that only one of the Jews in Congress is a Republican.

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