American voters believe U.S. President Barack Obama is not a strong supporter of Israel, a new Quinnipiac University survey revealed Thursday, also showing a large majority of Jewish voters as disappointed with the administration's handling of the Israel-Palestinian conflict.
While the poll showed 57 percent of U.S. voters sympathizing with Israel, with 66 percent saying Obama should be a strong supporter of Israel, almost half of Americans, 42 percent, said they did not believe Obama was indeed a strong supporter of Israel.
The survey also showed that while Obama enjoyed widespread support for his foreign policy, with a 48 percent approval rating, approximately 44 percent of those asked said they disapproved of the U.S. president's handling of the conflict between Israel and the Palestinians.
The poll also showed that Jewish American voters, generally supportive of Obama on other issues, saw the president's Middle East peace policy in a negative light.
Only 16 percent of Republicans and 33 percent of independents, the survey showed, thought Obama was a strong supporter of Israel, with the majority of Democrats, 53 percent, holding the same position.
Another interesting statistic mentioned in the poll was the fact that, according to Quinnipiac University, the wealthier and older the voter, the more likely they were to question Obama's support for Israel, also saying that 31 percent of white voters, but 54 percent of black voters, consider the American president a strong supporter of Israel.
"While 50 percent of Jews see Obama as a strong supporter of Israel, only 23 percent of Protestants and 35 percent of Roman Catholics see it that way," Peter Brown, assistant director of the Quinnipiac University Polling Institute said.
However, Brown added that "one explanation may just be that the President's low overall approval among Protestants and Catholics contributes to this disparity."
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