McCain still leads Obama ... in Israel

But Obama's visit to Israel gained him some ground among Israeli Jews, according to Keevoon poll.

mccain happy 88 (photo credit:)
mccain happy 88
(photo credit: )
While presumptive Democratic presidential nominee Barack Obama's world tour two weeks ago did not significantly improve his position in the US polls, his visit to Israel gained him some ground among Israeli Jews, according to a poll released Sunday.According to the poll carried out by Keevoon Research, Strategy & Communications, 38 percent of the Israeli Jewish public said they preferred the presumptive Republican candidate, John McCain, while 31% said they would prefer Obama be elected as the next US president.A full 31% either did not know or had no preference.The poll indicates that since May, Obama has steadily gained ground among Israelis.A Keevoon poll on May 15, before Hillary Clinton bowed out of the Democratic race, had McCain the preferred candidate over Obama among Israelis by a 43%-20% margin, with that 23-point lead dropping to 9% in a Makor Rishon poll on June 26, and to only 7% in the survey released on Sunday.Nevertheless, this is still considerably different from the preference of Jews in the US, who - according to a Gallup poll in May - will vote for Obama over McCain by a 61% to 32% margin. McCain's showing is still significantly better than what Republican presidential candidates traditionally garner among US Jews.According to Mitchell Barak, the managing director of Keevoon who is independently charting Israeli attitudes to the US elections, "Obama has definitely closed the gap, and Israelis have gotten to know him better over the past few months."But, Barak said, while the Democratic candidate's trip here some 10 days ago was widely covered in the Israeli press, and while the candidate said "all the right things" and went to "all the right places," he only had a slight gain from the poll that was conducted in June, well before his trip.The telephone poll was conducted among 499 Jewish Israelis in Hebrew on July 30-31, 2008, and has a 4.5% margin of error.