Poll: 75% of New Yorkers say antisemitism up since October 7

Siena Research Institute poll finds 62% of New Yorkers say Muslims also experiencing increased Islamophobia; 6 in 10 say Hamas attacks should be condemned without hesitation

Demonstrators rally at an "All out for Gaza" protest at Columbia University in New York on November 15, 2023 (Photo by Bryan R. Smith / AFP)
Demonstrators rally at an "All out for Gaza" protest at Columbia University in New York on November 15, 2023 (Photo by Bryan R. Smith / AFP)

Almost three-quarters of New Yorkers believe Jews in New York are experiencing a rise in antisemitism since Hamas’s attacks on Israel on October 7, according to a poll released Monday.

The Siena Research Institute poll also found that almost 60% of New Yorkers believe the terrorist attacks on Israeli civilians should be condemned “without hesitation or explanation,” while a further 25% condemn the murders but “believe the attacks were a result of decades of Israel’s treatment of the Palestinians.”

The poll, which was conducted on November 12-15 among 803 registered New York voters, also pointed to a rise in Islamophobia.

“New Yorkers see both anti-Semitism and, to a slightly lesser degree, Islamophobia as widespread, and both have increased since the October 7 Hamas attacks in Israel. At least two-thirds of voters from every region and party say that Jews are experiencing a great deal or some anti-Semitism,” said Dr. Don Levy, director of the Siena College Research Institute.

“And a strong majority of Democrats, independents, and voters from every region – as well as a plurality of Republicans – say Muslims are experiencing a great deal or some Islamophobia,” he said.

New York Police Department data released earlier in November corroborated the views reflected in the poll, showing a major increase in anti-Jewish incidents in the city following Hamas’s October 7 invasion and slaughter of some 1,200 people in southern Israel, most of them civilians, and Israel’s ensuing war against the terror group in Gaza.

The 69 antisemitic hate crimes reported in October marked a 214 percent increase over the same month last year, according to NYPD data.

When asked specifically about the Israel-Hamas war raging in the Gaza Strip, the poll found a majority of New Yorkers support Israel.

“A strong majority comes down on the side of Israel in this ongoing war,” Levy said, adding that, “Only 30% of New Yorkers say that the death of Palestinian civilians at the hand of Israeli attacks on Hamas in Gaza should be condemned without explanation.”

Unsurprisingly, the poll found that more than 90% of Jewish respondents said that “the Hamas attacks should be condemned without explanation and that Israel had no choice but to attack Hamas.”

Pro-Palestinian demonstrators burn an Israeli flag during a march calling for a ceasefire in Gaza, November 10, 2023, in New York. (AP Photo/Eduardo Munoz Alvarez)

A majority of New Yorkers (51-37%) also voiced support for US President Joe Biden’s $14.3 billion aid package to Israel, along with military and economic aid for Ukraine.

The data echoed a number of polls released last week, which found that a substantial majority of American Jews approve of Biden’s handling of the Israel-Hamas war, while majorities of Americans disapprove.

Biden has strongly backed Israel in the war, earning protests from the far left, including some lawmakers in his Democratic Party.

The New York poll also explored public opinion ahead of the 2024 US presidential elections, finding that while Biden’s favorability rating was virtually unchanged from last month, just after the outbreak of the war in Gaza, his job approval rating was slightly down.

Biden’s potential opponent, former US president Donald Trump, assuming both are nominated in upcoming Democratic and Republican primaries, saw a slight drop in favorability.

JTA contributed to this report

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