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Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Some Interesting Tidbits From the Pew Survey on Jewish America

Modern Orthodox essentially mirror the US general public liberal-moderate-conservative breakdown (22-35-41 for MO vs. (21-36-38) for the general public but are WAY more likely to lean Republican (MO Jews 57-37 lean Republican, US general public 49-39 lean Democrati). This is presumably due to the importance of Israel among the Modern Orthodox and the conservative viewpoint (i.e. more supportive of West Bank settlements/more likely to have friends and relatives living in them) held by Modern Orthodox Jews regarding Israel. It may also have to do with the yeshiva/day school tuition issue, though. For that matter, on the liberal-moderate-conservative breakdown, Modern Orthodox Jews essentially mirror black Protestants who break down 21-36-36 liberal-moderate-conservative, yet black Protestants are

By contrast, ultra-Orthodox Jews essentially mirror evangelical Christians in liberal-moderate-conservative breakdown (7-21-64 among ultra-Orthodox, 8-27-62 among evangelical Christians), but ultra-Orthodox Jews are significantly more likely to lean Democratic (35-58 Democratic/Republican among ultra-Orthodox vs. 26-66 Democratic/Republican among evangelical Christians). I assume this disparity has to do with recognition of the dependence on various government programs in Williamsburg, Boro Park, Monsey, etc. and knowledge that Democrats tend to be more favorable to these programs.

Jews of no religion do have a religion, liberalism. A whopping 67% identify as liberals, versus only 11% identifying as conservative. No non-Jewish group even comes close. It's true that black Protestants break down 85-8 Democratic, which is somewhat higher even than the 78-12 Democratic breakdown of Jews of no religion, but as mentioned above, on the liberal-moderate-conservative breakdown, they essentially mirror the Modern Orthodox. A word of caution to people such as Steven Plaut and David Harsanyi who blame assimilation on non-Orthodox denominations espousing liberalism as being Judaism. Jews of no religion (67-20-11) are more liberal than Reform Jews (58-29-13) and significantly more so than Conservative Jews (35-33-28).

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