Daily Israel Report

Survey: Israel’s Jews Want Jewish Majority on Critical Decisions

Seventy-eight percent of Israeli Jews want a Jewish majority on matters of critical national importance.
By Maayana Miskin
First Publish: 9/25/2011, 3:04 PM

Peres gets 2011 IDI report
Peres gets 2011 IDI report
Mark Neiman

Most Israeli Jews believe that decisions on the country’s future should have the agreement of the majority of Israel’s Jewish citizens, according to a survey by the Israel Democracy Institute (IDI). A total of 77.9 percent of Jewish respondents said there should be majority Jewish support for decisions on peace or security with a long-term national impact.

Almost 70 percent said the same regarding decisions critical to Israel’s socio-economic future and decisions impacting the form of government.

The findings were part of the IDI’s Israel Democracy Index 2011. On Sunday morning, the index was presented to President Shimon Peres.

The survey had good news for Peres. Nearly 78 percent of the public expressed trust in him, compared to 75.7 percent for the state comptroller, 75 percent for Bank of Israel President Stanley Fischer, 68.7 percent for the Supreme Court, 64.1 percent for Attorney General Yehuda Weinstein, 61.1 percent for state attorneys, 51.8 percent for the police, 51.6 percent for the Knesset, 51 percent for the government, 49 percent for Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu, 48 percent for the Rabbinate, and 35.6 percent for political parties.

Support was also high for the IDF, although pollsters found that support was lower among younger age groups. Among those age 55 and higher 93.2 percent said they trust the army, while among those ages 35-54 trust was at 84.8 percent, and among younger adults it was at 74.6 percent.

The poll also found that public opinion is divided regarding Israel’s government. More than 52 percent said they believe Israeli democracy is functioning well, but the remainder said they were dissatisfied. Young people, Arabs, and the hareidi-religious were less likely to be satisfied with government function.

The poll found a significant decrease in the number of young people who believe they can build a better life than that enjoyed by their parents. While last year the plurality of young Jews said they believe they have a greater chance of success than their parents did, in 2011, 57 percent of young Jews said their chances for success were less.

In good news, 83 percent of Israelis – including more than half of Arab citizens – say they are proud to be Israeli. Despite the decrease in optimism for future success, 78 percent said they are certain they want to remain in the country in the long term.