Obama's Jewish Support Slipping in Fla.

Monday, 20 Aug 2012 10:24 AM

By Greg McDonald

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President Barack Obama's support among Jewish voters in Florida appears to be eroding somewhat because of the economy and recent GOP attacks on his Middle East policy, the Boston Globe reported Monday.
 
Although the support slippage is small, ranging from 3 percent to low double-digits, any loss of support could be crucial for Obama in a swing state like Florida, where most Jewish voters can usually be counted on to vote Democratic.
 
"A small shift in the Jewish vote can make a difference," University of Miami professor Ira Sheskin, director of the school's Jewish Demography Project, told the Globe.
 
For example, Obama leads Romney in Florida by an average of only 1.4 percent, the Globe reported, citing a RealClearPolitics analysis of recent polls. Any loss of voter support could be hard to overcome.
 
A Gallup poll last month found that nationwide Jewish support for Obama has fallen to 68 percent, down from 78 percent in 2008 when he faced then Republican nominee John McCain.
 
According to the Globe, the poor U.S. economy is still the top concern among Jewish voters, just as it is for most Americans. But many in the Jewish community are concerned that Obama is not doing enough about Iran's nuclear development program and worry about his positions on Jewish settlements and what they view as his contentious relationship with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.
 
"There are some people who are concerned about whether Obama really has his heart in Israel," Sheskin told the Globe. "There are people who are afraid that Obama will put undue pressure on Israel in his second term."

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