The number of Israelis who view US President Obama as pro-Palestinian dropped by 20 percent following his first presidential visit to Israel, according to a new poll.
In the poll, conducted by Smith Research for the Jerusalem Post, 27% of 500 Israeli respondents said they considered the Obama administration more pro-Israel than pro-Palestinian, 16% said he was more pro-Palestinian, 39% were neutral, and 18% did not an express an opinion.
In a pre-visit poll conducted March 17, 36% of respondents said they thought Obama was more pro-Palestinian than pro-Israel, 26% said Obama was more pro-Israel, 26% said he was neutral and 12% expressed no opinion. The survey had a margin of error of plus or minus 4 percentage points.
Palestinian disappointment with Obama’s positive messages about Israel, and his failure to visit former Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat’s grave, was widely reported in the Hebrew press.
Among Labor voters who participated in the post-visit poll, 51% said Obama was pro-Israel. That figure was 29% among Yesh Atid voters, 27% for Likud-Beiteinu and Shas supporters, and 20% for those who supported the Jewish Home party.
The proportion that considered the administration more pro-Palestinian than pro-Israel was 40% among Shas voters, 20% for those who voted Jewish Home, 19% for Likud-Beiteinu, 11% among Yesh Atid supporters, and 6% among Labor voters.
A Channel 2 survey, published hours after Obama headed home from the Middle East last Saturday, found that 39% of Israelis said their opinion of him had changed for the better as a result of his visit.
Only 2% said their attitude to him had changed for the worse, 54% were unchanged from their previous view of the president, and 5% didn’t know.
The snap Channel 2 survey — which did not ask that 54% unchanged sector what their previous view of the president had been — was conducted among 417 Israelis with a margin of error of 4.7%, the TV report said.
Asked if they believed Obama when he said he would prevent Iran from attaining nuclear weapons, 58% responded that they believed him, 38% said they did not believe him, and 4% didn’t know, the same poll found.