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Thursday, February 07, 2008

Jews Follow Trend, Split Vote for Dems

.....Six states — New York, New Jersey, Connecticut, Massachusetts, California and Arizona — had large enough Jewish samples to include data about Jewish preferences on the Democratic side.

Clinton won the largest slice of the Jewish vote, 65%, in her home state of New York. In several other states, including New Jersey, California and Arizona, the Jewish vote mirrored the leanings of Democratic voters as a whole, with Clinton edging out Obama by smaller margins.

Obama, however, outshone the New York senator among Jewish voters in both Massachusetts and Connecticut, two states where the endorsement of Senator Edward Kennedy may have proved pivotal. Jews “responded to the 11th commandment, ‘Thou Shalt Be a Liberal Democrat,’” said Democratic strategist Hank Sheinkopf. “He probably impacted a significant number of Jews whose religion is secular liberalism, who would follow Kennedy into a burning forest.”

Obama won 52% of the Jewish vote in the Bay State, despite coming in roughly 15 points behind the New York senator overall. In Connecticut, Obama won the state narrowly — edging out Clinton by only several percentage points — but enjoyed a disproportionately wide margin of victory in the Jewish community. Sixty-one percent of Jews in Connecticut voted for the Illinois senator, versus 38% for Clinton.....

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