Poll: American sympathy for Israel at record high

Gallup poll finds in run up to President Obama's visit to Middle East, 64% sympathize with Israelis and 12% with Palestinians.

US flags prepared ahead of Obama visit 370 (photo credit: REUTERS)
US flags prepared ahead of Obama visit 370
(photo credit: REUTERS)
Americans’ sympathies for Israel matched an all-time high according to a Gallup poll released on Friday, just five days before US President Barack Obama was scheduled to visit Israel for the first time as president.
According to the poll, Americans heavily favor the Israelis over the Palestinians, 64 percent versus 12%.
While partiality to Israel has topped 60% consistently since 2010, the 64% recorded in Friday’s poll matched the previous record seen in 1991, during the first Gulf War. In the 1991 Gallup poll, only 7% of respondents sympathized more with Palestinians than Israelis.
Analysis of the poll data showed that Republicans, conservatives and older Americans were more likely to be partial to Israel.
Republicans (78%) were much more likely to sympathize with Israel than Democrats (55%), according to the poll. Democratic support for the state has increased by four percentage points since 2001, while Republican support jumped 18 percentage points in the same period.
The percentage of respondents favoring the Palestinians increases with formal education, ranging from 8% of those with no college experience to 20% of postgraduates.
“Palestinians receive the highest sympathy from Democrats, liberals, and postgraduates, but even among these, support tops off at 24%,” according to Gallup.