The currently available data on the American Jewish electorate is, at best, incomplete. In order to better understand the Jewish electorate, JEI commissioned a non-partisan poll of 800 Jewish voters in October 2018. The poll explored the nuances of issues related to Jewish voting behavior and helped to inform public discourse in advance of the midterm election. In May 2019, JEI conducted a larger non-partisan poll of 1,000 Jewish voters to better understand the political preferences and priorities of the Jewish electorate, including how it may have shifted since the midterm elections. In February 2020, JEI conducted a similar non-partisan poll of 1,001 Jewish voters to better understand which political parties Jewish voters identify with, how they would vote in potential head-to-head matchups between leading Democratic candidates and President Trump, and which issues Jewish voters care most about when casting their ballots.
This comparative data has helped to inform the public conversation surrounding the Jewish vote and received widespread media coverage.
JEI’s message to the Jewish community is as follows: irrespective of individual political leanings, participation in our democracy is a Jewish value and an important part of our Jewish American identity. By using media resources, JEI has created tailored messages intended to target specific segments of the Jewish electorate. In the 2018 midterm elections, our messages targeted newly-eligible and millennial Jewish voters via social media with information about voter registration, polling locations, and the importance of civic engagement.
Get Out The Vote
Jewish Americans represent a critically important segment of the American electorate, and JEI believes that it is important for our voices to be heard at the polling place to ensure that our concerns are adequately represented by our elected officials. In the 2018 midterm election, JEI initiated a nonpartisan Get Out the Vote (GOTV) campaign aimed at maximizing turnout among Jewish Americans nationally. JEI’s GOTV messages targeted younger voters, who are less likely to vote, and focused on the importance of civic participation.
JEI will continue to conduct and publish research on the policy priorities and preferences of the American Jewish community. This includes compiling information on voting patterns, preferences, and turnout of the American Jewish community, and generating new, specific data about newly-eligible Jewish voters, younger Jewish voters, and other tailored segments of the American Jewish electorate. This data will help inform public discourse about the Jewish electorate and deepen our understanding of American Jewish voters. One of JEI’s upcoming projects will involve gathering data on the geographic distribution of the Jewish electorate at the Congressional district level, to ensure publicly-available data is current and precise. As we move into the 2020 election cycle, this data will be critical in expanding the public’s understanding of the Jewish electorate and priorities of Jewish American voters.