Dems Favor Palestinians Over Israelis For First Time, Poll Shows

Poll comes as progressive lawmakers have worked to shift the Democratic Party’s support away from Israel

Original "Squad” members Rashida Tlaib (D., Mich.), Ilhan Omar (D., Minn.), and Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D., N.Y.) (Getty Images)
March 16, 2023

Democrats are for the first time more likely to favor the Palestinians over Israelis in the Middle East conflict, according to a new Gallup poll, reflecting the party leadership’s growing opposition to the Jewish state.

Forty-nine percent of Democrats now say they sympathize more with Palestinians, compared to 38 percent who side with Israelis—a staggering 11-point swing since just last year.

The poll comes as far-left, anti-Israel lawmakers have worked to shift the Democratic Party’s support away from Israel over the past several years.

High-profile "Squad" members, including Reps. Ilhan Omar (Minn.), Rashida Tlaib (Mich.), and Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (N.Y.) have accused Israel of "apartheid" and called for cutting off military support to the Jewish state.

Omar’s claim that U.S. politicians only back Israel because of donations—"It’s all about the Benjamins baby," she wrote on Twitter in 2019—was widely denounced as anti-Semitic and led to Republicans removing her from the House Foreign Affairs Committee earlier this year. In 2021, House Democrats voted to block funding to Israel’s Iron Dome missile defense system under pressure from far-left lawmakers.

"This is an extremely troubling trend," said Republican Jewish Coalition CEO Matt Brooks. "Many elected Democrats claim to be pro-Israel, but party activists and rank-and-file members are increasingly indifferent and even hostile to the Jewish state. It’s long past time for Democratic leaders to admit they have a problem that must be addressed to restore the historic bipartisan support for Israel."

The Gallup poll shows a significant shift in Democrats’ views of Israel over the past two decades, a trend that has become more pronounced in recent years.

In 2001, 51 percent of Democrats sympathized more with Israelis compared with 16 percent who sympathized more with Palestinians. That gap narrowed to just a 5-point advantage for Israel in 2020, and a 2-point advantage last year.

Independents also expressed a 6-point increase in support for Palestinians since 2022, but they still sided more with Israel by 49 percent to 32 percent.

Republican views remained the same, according to the poll, with 78 percent backing Israel.