Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and US President Donald Trump at Ben Gurion airport on May 23, 2017.
(photo credit: KOBI GIDEON/GPO)
Israelis’ support for President Donald Trump has risen since his visit last month, suggesting his signing of a waiver delaying any US embassy move to Jerusalem has had little impact on his popularity, a Smith Research poll taken for The Jerusalem Post shows.
The survey was taken on Sunday, three days after Trump broke a campaign promise to swiftly move the embassy from Tel Aviv to the capital, but had impressed the public by becoming the first sitting US president to visit the Western Wall and giving emotional speeches about Israel and the Jewish people at the Israel Museum and the Yad Vashem Holocaust memorial.
When asked if the Trump administration was more pro-Israel, more pro-Palestinian, or neutral, 61% of the Jewish respondents said it is more pro-Israel, 3% said more pro-Palestinian, 22% said neutral, and 14% said they had no opinion or did not know.
The proportion of Israeli Jews calling Trump’s administration more pro-Israel rose from 56% on May 17, just before his visit.
Ahead of Trump’s inauguration in January, 79% said they saw the administration as more pro-Israel.
There was almost no change in the percentage calling the Trump administration more pro-Palestinian, which fell from 4% before the tour to 3% after.
The share of those calling the administration neutral rose from 21% to 22%.
It appeared from the poll that Trump has persuaded many Israeli Jews who previously had said they did not know whether he was more pro-Israel or pro-Palestinian. That group fell from 19% before the tour to 14% after.
The poll of 500 adults representing a statistical sample of the adult Israeli Jewish population had a margin of error of 4.5%.
Male respondents were more likely to call Trump more pro-Israel than were women, with 65% of men deeming him as such and 58% of women.
Trump received more positive numbers from respondents under 30 than from those over 50, with 70% of the former calling his administration more pro-Israel, compared to 55% of the latter.
Zionist Union supporters were more likely than other respondents to call the Trump administration neutral, 41% compared to 22% among the general population. Yesh Atid voters chose the “I don’t know option” far less frequently than other respondents, with only 3% saying so, compared to 14% among respondents as a whole.
Smith Research asked the same question of Israelis before and after the March 2013 visit of then-president Barack Obama. The polls found that the proportion calling his administration more pro-Israel rose only one point despite a “charm offensive” in which he made an effort to reach out to Israelis.