One probably shouldn’t make too, too much of the new Gallup poll on President Obama’s approval rating among various religious groups (which is being most widely touted because it shows that the religious group in which he enjoys the highest support is Muslims). Jews have gone from supporting him 77 percent between January and June of 2009; to 66 percent between July and December 2009; to, now, 61 percent between January 2010 and June 2010.
That is a very real drop, to be sure. But it is also one entirely in keeping with how everyone else feels: The “All Americans” approval rating has gone from 63 percent to 53 percent to, now, 48 percent, according to Gallup. “President Obama’s job approval ratings have fallen significantly between his first six months in office and this year so far, and his ratings among major religious groups have fallen in rough lock step,” the poll finds. Which is to say: I think it is entirely too easy to say that he is facing a much steeper drop in support among Jews than he is among other groups (and it’s downright dumb to say that Israel is to blame). If there is one bone to throw to those who think Obama has significantly damaged his standing among American Jews, more than he has other groups, it is to argue that his numbers among them were once so high that their drop must reflect something more than just the broader trend. Ultimatately, though, to borrow from a past syllogism: Americans approve of the president less than they once did; Jews are Americans; therefore, Jews approve of the president less than they once did.
Muslims Give Obama Highest Job Approval; Mormons, Lowest [Gallup]
Earlier: Obama and the Jews