Thursday, September 29, 2011

Chicken Comes Home To Roost

For those of you who might have thought that a liberal Democrat would wander off the reservation for long, Ed Koch (former New York City mayor) should put your minds to rest. Koch has been loosely credited with creating the margin of victory by which a Republican took a New York Democratic seat for the first time since 1923. His concern was Barack Obama's terrible record on Israel.

Koch says that he heard Obama's moral equivalency speech at the United Nations, and was instantly convinced that he had been wrong about Obama's dedication to the survival of Israel. While supporting Republican Bob Turner in the recent Congressional election, Koch said the following: "I am doing what I'm doing to cause President Obama to change his hostile position on the State of Israel and to re-establish the special relationship presidents before him have had." What it was about Obama's UN speech that was any different is mystifying to many. Polls taken since the UN speech indicate that Jewish support for Obama continues to decline.

Koch is very influential among liberal Jewish voters, so it remains to be seen how strongly he will back Obama and how much effect it will ultimately have on that particular demographic. Polls taken after the President's UN speech indicate that the President's views on the Israel/Palestinian issue have not changed voters' minds in the President's favor. Two years ago, Obama still had a clear majority with the Jewish vote on the issue, according to the polling of the American Jewish Commission. That poll showed that in 2009, Obama's favorables were 54% to 32%. After the UN speech, the same poll asking the same questions about Palestine showed that Obama's approval was at 40% against a disapproval rate of 53%.

On overall approval of the President's job, the Democrat-leaning Gallup poll found that Obama's approval rate among Jewish voters was still high at 54%. But even that is a dramatic drop. In 2009, his approval rate was at 83%, dropping to 54% in 2010, and staying there. Likewise, the AJC poll in 2009 showed that Jewish voters were 53% Democratic. The same poll today shows that figure to be 45% (the loss was to those registered as Independents or decline-to-state, while the Republican percentage has remained unchanged at 16%).

Koch says that Obama's "words of support for Israel" during the UN speech, combined with his recent intervention in the Cairo attacks on the Israeli embassy and providing bunker buster bombs to Israel (in 2009) has changed his mind. Says Koch: "I'm now on board the Obama Reelection Express." It strikes me that Koch's mind is easily changed and his political stance easily modified.

I could understand Koch's change of heart if Obama had said "I will immediately supply Israel with all necessary military support for bombing Iran's nuclear facilities," or "I firmly support Israel's claim to Jerusalem--all of Jerusalem--as its capital, and reject any claims by the Palestinians to portions of Jerusalem." But what he did say was the usual blather about the longtime friendship of Israel and America, then launched into moral equivalencies, the "cycle of violence," and the "walk in their shoes" nonsense. In other words, "I sort of support Israel, as long as I don't have to do anything about it." With friends like that, who needs enemies?

In the ACJ poll, Jewish voters would elect Obama over Romney 50-32, over Perry 55-25, and over Bachmann 59-19. That's a hefty Democratic advantage among Jewish voters. It's also a hefty increase among undecideds. But is it that great? In 2008, Jewish voters chose Obama over McCain by 77-22. Herman Cain was not mentioned in the poll, but after his Florida victory in the straw poll, it will be very interesting to see how that plays with Jewish voters in the next poll.

Between now and the election, the polls I'm looking at tell me that Koch and Obama had better make appearances together, kiss a lot of babies, shake a lot of hands, and attend a lot of bar mitzvahs if they want to win back the formerly top-heavy Jewish vote. A real rejection of unilateral Palestinian demands might help too.

23 comments:

T-Rav said...

Figures. I do like Ed Koch, since he holds conservative positions on certain issues, such as the use of the death penalty. I'd prefer to give him the benefit of the doubt here, since he's far from being the only guy taken in by Obama's duplicity; but I'd prefer to see him pushing Jewish voters away from TOTUS.

LawHawkRFD said...

T-Rav: Koch is a long way from the left-wing fringe of the Democratic Party. But he sure made an overnight turnaround about Obama's position on Israel with only one meaningless speech to change his mind. I didn't expect him to leave the Democratic Party, but I also didn't expect him to become an enthusiastic campaigner for Obama, either.

BevfromNYC said...

Koch is a fraud. If he honestly believes that one speech can wipe away 3 years of anti-Israel sentiment, he's more daft that I thought. I've never been a great fan of Koch's anyway, as he presided over the worst years of NYC by not making them any better...

rlaWTX said...

It sounds like he was off his Dem-Opinion meds for a while, but has restarted the regimen...

StanH said...

All democrats are fed SOMA riaWTX, as in “A Brave New World,” so they quickly return to, “yes master.”

Koch will never leave his beloved democrat party, anyway they know where all of Koch’s skeletons are buried.

LawHawkRFD said...

Bev: I'd have to put Dinkins ahead of Koch on the failure list, but I take your point. Koch simply amazed me by making such a drastic change in his political position in such a short time and after such a lame and pro forma, speech by Obama.

LawHawkRFD said...

rlaWTX: Aha! Somebody has the answer. Sometimes the obvious escapes me. LOL

Tennessee Jed said...

I'm with Bev - Koch smells like teen spirit; wait, I mean fraud. I would never want to need him to watch my back on anything. As far as American Jews are concerned, I don't understand why anyone would support this Obama guy other than standard issue victims such as teenage crack ho' baby mommas.

AndrewPrice said...

Ed Koch had always been a tease. As far back as Bush I, I remember his flirting with supporting Republicans. Each time, Republicans fell for it, thinking he was joining our side, and each time right at the moment his support would have been the most helpful, he suddenly changed his mind.

I think it's great that he pointed out Obama's faults, but now he's back on the reservations -- as always. And he'll stay there through 2012 at least.

BevfromNYC said...

BTW - Happy 5772, everyone!

The other issues is that despite popular belief, Jews have other issues besides the Middle East. Obama's number have fallen and can't get up with Jews because he fails miserably in his domestic policies more than in US/Israeli relations.

I am extremely disappointed in Koch that flipped so fast and I think it may have been just for show. But then, he is a die-hard Democrat, so what can you expect.

LawHawkRFD said...

Tennessee: I don't get it either, and I wouldn't want him watching my back. It is clear that some solution has to be reached about the Palestinians. People of good faith are willing to do that both in Israel and the US. But Obama's starting point is moral equivalence and "ending the cycle of violence." If and when Obama admits that the violence against innocent civilians always starts on the Palestinian side of the map, and that until the Palestinians fully accept the right of Israel to exist, there can be no further negotiations, then I could understand Koch's volte- face. Those who are members of the Jewish liberal/left are beginning to wake up to the scam, but apparently Koch isn't among them.

rlaWTX said...

OK - I'll ask... 5772?

LawHawkRFD said...

Bev: And happy new year to you as well.

There are indeed so many other issues that Obama simply can't get past. Even the strong predisposition toward helping the helpless that is so ingrained in Jewish hearts is beginning to wear thin where Obama is concerned. Obama hasn't helped anybody but himself so far, and he sure hasn't helped black people, a concern that put Jews in the forefront of the Civil Rights movement.

LawHawkRFD said...

rlaWTX: Rosh Hashanah, the Jewish New Year, which began at sundown on Wednesday evening.

LawHawkRFD said...

Andrew: I'm old enough to remember the young Koch supporting Republican Senator Jacob Javits. Javits was a liberal/Rockefeller Republican, and by today's definition, a RINO. But then, as now, he always returned to the Democratic reservation.

LawHawkRFD said...

Stan: Sorry, I somehow missed your comment.

I think that Koch's gut instincts tell him that he would be one of those attacked for being a racist if he opposed a black president. Republicans and conservatives figure that's par for the course, but it's a terror for liberal Jewish Democrats. That is part of why I mentioned that it would really be interesting if Herman Cain won the Republican nomination.

T-Rav said...

Yeah, happy Jewish New Year! (Not that I celebrate it, but what the heck...)

I can't say I'm too upset. Every time I think a Democrat's seen the light, they just drop right back into the groupthink. Oh well.

BevfromNYC said...

rlaWTX - The Jewish year is 4772 and is the year from the first days of of the Jewish people. As opposed to the western Gregorian calendar which deliniates between before the birth of Christ (B.C.) and after the birth of Christ (A.D.) Jewish calendar does not recognize the birth of Jesus as a calendar event.

Another distinction - the Jewish calendar is based on the cycles of the moon and the Gregorian calendar is based on the rotation of the sun.

LawHawkRFD said...

T-Rav: I celebrate everything, although I must admit it's not quite as riotous as it was when I was still drinking. LOL

rlaWTX said...

well then - Happy New Year!

(Law, I'm sure the Jews just copied it from the Muslims... right?)

T-Rav said...

rla, the Jews copy everything from the Muslims, obviously--even though Islam was founded more than 2000 years after Judaism, and was basically a mish-mash of Christian, Jewish, and Arabic pagan ideas. But Jews like to copy stuff, so of course, yes.

LawHawkRFD said...

rlaWTX: That would be correct. As I mentioned in my article Forget What You Thought You Knew (in our recommended reading section over at the right of the front page), the Muslims invented everything.

LawHawkRFD said...

T-Rav: Yeah, the Jews like to copy stuff then rewrite history to make it look they invented it. It took a lot of work to cover up the fact that they stole the Bible from Ishmael after Abraham kicked Ishmael and his mother out, and have been lying about it ever since. LOL Isaac was a sneaky little devil, wasn't he?

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