Peace Index: 62% of Israelis Predict Clinton Will Win U.S. Election

But more Israelis think Trump would be better for Jewish state

Sixty-two percent of Israelis expect Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton to win the U.S. election, according to the latest Peace Index, published Wednesday by the Israel Democracy Institute and Tel Aviv University. Less than one-quarter (24%) of Israelis believe Republican candidate Donald Trump will be the next U.S. president.

The U.S. elections was among the key topics discussed by respondents to this month’s Index, which also included questions about the French ban on the burkini, the military trial of Hebron shooter and IDF soldier Elor Azaria, and the Israeli education system.

When Jewish Israelis were asked which U.S. presidential candidate would be better for Israel from the standpoint of the Israeli government’s policy, the Jewish public thinks Trump (38.5%) will be better than Clinton (33%). Nevertheless, when asked, “Who would you want to win the U.S. presidential elections?” a higher rate (43%) of Jewish Israelis prefers Clinton over Trump.

  • The left (86%) and center (57%) have an overwhelming preference for Clinton. 
  • The right (49%) prefers Trump.
  • The Arab public (58%) also shows a clear inclination toward Clinton.

Recently, dozens of French towns decided to prohibit the wearing of the burkini, a swimsuit that completely covers a woman’s body. We asked, “With which of the following two claims do you agree more: ‘The burkini symbolizes the subjugation of the Muslim woman and therefore it is justified for the French to oppose it’ or ‘A democratic state must permit every woman and man to dress as they wish in the public arena, including in the case of traditional and conservative clothing’?”

Some 60.5% of the Jewish public agrees with the second claim and only 28% with the first, indicating that a large majority of the Israeli public favors freedom of attire. Affirmation of the second statement was consistent among the right (59%), the center (61%) and the left (73%), as well as among the Arab public (71%).

Amid the ongoing trial of the Kfir Brigade soldier who shot a wounded terrorist who had carried out a stabbing attack in Hebron, we asked the Jewish public: “Some claim that any Palestinian who carries out a terror attack against Jews should be killed on the spot, even if he has been captured and clearly does not pose a threat. Others claim that the moment he has ceased to pose a threat, the Palestinian attacker must be handed over to the legal authorities. With which of the two claims do you agree more?”

Jewish Israelis were divided, with 47% favoring shooting the terrorist and 45% favoring handing the terrorist over to authorities.

  • Support for killing the terrorist at the scene was highest among the right (62%), young people aged 18 to 24 (69%), ultra-Orthodox (63%) and religious/traditional Jews (72%).

With the start of the new school year in Israel on Sept. 1, we assessed how well Israelis perceive the Israeli education system. On a scale of 0 (poor) to 10 (excellent), Israelis ranked the system at 5.58.

The Arabs gave the system a slightly higher grade than their Jewish counterparts at 5.85 compared to 5.53.

This month’s Peace Index survey was conducted by telephone from August 30-31, 2016. The survey included 600 respondents (500 Jews, 100 Arabs), who constitute a representative national sample of the entire adult population aged 18 and over. The maximum measurement error for the entire sample is ±4.1% at a confidence level of 95%.
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