February 14, 2017
News Press Release

New Poll: Minority of Americans Support a Palestinian State

Americans Support Israel Over Palestinians By More Than 3–To–1 Ratio

A new Gallup poll has found that the American public is tepid on the subject of establishing a Palestinian state as part of Israel/Palestinian Arab peace negotiations. According to the Gallup annual World Affairs poll, conducted during February 1–5, 2017,  a minority of 45% of Americans support Palestinian statehood, 42% oppose it, while 13% are undecided.

In other results, the poll showed:

  • Americans sympathize more with the Israelis (62%) than the Palestinian Arabs (19%) –– a rating of more than three to one.
  • Republicans sympathize with Israel over the Palestinian Arabs by 82% to 6%, Independents by 57% to 23%, and Democrats by 47% to 29%.
  • 49% of Americans view Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu favorably, as against 30% who view him unfavorably (Lydia Saad, ‘Americans Tepid on Palestinian Statehood,’ Gallup, February 13, 2017).

This result is roughly similar with numerous earlier polls showing far greater American pubic support for Israel than for the Palestinian Arabs:

  • February 2015 Gallup World Affairs poll, found that 70% of Americans favor Israel, while 62% say they sympathize more with the Israelis than the Palestinian Arabs. Only 17% view the Palestinian Authority (PA) favorably.
  • February 2015 CNN/ORC poll, conducted by Paragon Insights, 52% of Americans believe that the U.S. should support Israel (26% say “strongly support”), whereas only 11% believe it should support the Palestinians (3% say “strongly support”).
  • February 2013 Gallup poll found that Americans favor Israel over the Palestinians by 64% to 12%. This is the highest pro-Israel finding by Gallup since the Persian Gulf war in 1991, when Americans favored Israel over the Palestinians by 64% to 7%, while pro-Israel sentiment has been found by Gallup to consistently exceed 60% since 2010.
  • September 2012 Foreign Policy Initiative poll found that a strong majority of Americans (70%) view Israel favorably as opposed to 24% who view it unfavorably. When asked in an open-ended question to name the country that is “America’s best ally in the world today”, Israel (15.9%) came second only to the United  Kingdom (54.0%).
  • February 2012 Gallup poll: Israel has an near all-time high popularity rating among Americans of 71%, in line with high ratings for other traditional American allies. Israel’s “very favorable” rating (29%) was the highest in the past 23 years, while its overall favorable rating was the highest since 1991 (when it was 79% just after the First Gulf War).
  • August 2011 McLaughlin Associates & Caddell Associates national survey 71% of Americans believe that Jerusalem should remain the undivided capital of Israel, as opposed to a mere 9% who believe that the U.S. should force Israel to cede parts of Jerusalem, including Christian and Jewish holy sites, to the Palestinian Authority. 82% of Americans believe that Palestinians  must recognize Israel’s right to exist as a Jewish state before obtaining statehood, as opposed to a mere 7% who disagree. 66% of Americans believe that Iran would attack Israel with nuclear weapons once it obtains them, as against 13% who believe otherwise.
  • May 2011 CNN Poll: 67% of Americans express sympathy for Israel rather than Palestinians, whereas only 16% expressed sympathy for Palestinians over Israelis. (This represents a rise of sympathy for Israel among the American public from 60%, and a drop of sympathy for Palestinians from 17% recorded in 2009). 67% of Americans view Israel favorably (23% very favorably, 42% somewhat favorably) as against 33% of Americans who do not (24% somewhat unfavorably, 9% very unfavorably). An overwhelming 82% of Americans regard Israel as either a U.S. friend or ally (44% regard Israel as an ally, 38% regard it as a friend), as opposed to a mere 17% who regard it as unfriendly or an enemy (12% regard it as unfriendly, a mere 5% as an enemy). 65% of Americans say the United States should not take either side in the Israeli/Palestinian conflict, while, among the rest of the public, 35% say the U.S. should take Israel’s side, while just a mere 1% favors backing the Palestinians.