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Monday, March 02, 2015

Poll: 'Even if Netanyahu has seen his relationship with the White House deteriorate ... no impact on his standing with the American people'

A Gallup poll shows that Prime Minister Netanyahu is viewed favorably by 45% of Americans and unfavorably by 24%. That's a statistical tie with his 1998 favorable rating of 46% (which was around the time that he signed the Wye Agreement), and a significant improvement over his 2012 rating of 35% positive and 23% negative.
While Netanyahu's favorable score has varied slightly over the years, his unfavorable score has been relatively stable, ranging from 20% to 28%. Notably, even while his favorable score increased since 2012, his unfavorable score stayed about the same. Meanwhile, fewer Americans have no opinion of Netanyahu today than did so in 2012, with 31% vs. 41%, respectively, either saying they are unsure or have never heard of him.
[E]ven if Netanyahu has seen his relationship with the White House deteriorate, it appears to have had no impact on his standing with the American people.
Perhaps it should go without saying that Netanyahu does better among Republicans than among Democrats.
Though the American public in general views Netanyahu more favorably than unfavorably, there are sharp party differences in these views. Republicans are much more likely to view Netanyahu positively (60%) than negatively (18%), while Democrats are evenly divided in their views of him: 31% favorable and 31% unfavorable. Independents' favorable ratings of Netanyahu are twice as high as their unfavorable ratings.
And his ratings have improved since 2012 among all parties.
Despite White House and other prominent Democratic officials' criticism of Netanyahu's visit, his favorable rating has improved among all major party groups since 2012. The increase has been slightly higher among independents (+13 points) and Republicans (+10 points) than Democrats (+6 points). Democrats are slightly more likely now to see Netanyahu favorably compared with 2012 -- the well-broadcast break with the Obama administration in recent weeks notwithstanding.
Maybe it pays to pick a fight with Obama.

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