U.S. voters down on Obama’s handling of Israel

U.S. voters down on Obama’s handling of Israel

WASHINGTON — A plurality of American voters disapprove of President Obama’s handling of the Israeli-Palestinian situation, a poll shows.
The Quinnipiac poll, taken April 14-19, showed a slight plurality approved of Obama’s handling of foreign policy overall — 48 percent to 42 percent — but disapproved of how he is “handling the situation between Israel and the Palestinians,” 44 percent to 35 percent, with 21 percent saying they did not know or would not answer.
Broken down by party affiliation, Republicans were much likelier to disapprove, at 68 percent, while Democrats approved, with 59 percent. Independents were likelier to disapprove — 47 percent to 33 percent.
Fifty-seven percent of respondents said their sympathies lay more with Israel than the Palestinians, while 13 percent sided with the Palestinians and 31 percent did not know or would not answer. Broken down among parties, 70 percent to 8 percent of Republicans favored Israel over the Palestinians, as opposed to 46 percent to 19 percent of Democrats and 57 to 13 percent of Independents who favored Israel.
A total of 34 percent of respondents saw Obama as a strong supporter of Israel, while 66 percent — with majorities across party lines — believed he should be a strong supporter.
A plurality of respondents, 49 percent, disapproved of Obama’s policy of not using nuclear weapons against nations that forswear them.
The poll, taken a month after the eruption of U.S.-Israel tensions over building in eastern Jerusalem, surveyed 1,930 voters nationwide and had a plus-minus margin of error of 2.2 percent.