Poll: Obama Has Strong Lead Over Romney Among Arab Americans

Arab American Institute President Jim Zogby (file photo)Arab American Institute President Jim Zogby (file photo)
x
Arab American Institute President Jim Zogby (file photo)
Arab American Institute President Jim Zogby (file photo)
Cindy Saine
The Arab American Institute has released the results of a September survey of 400 Arab Americans, which shows that a majority support Democratic President Barack Obama in the race for the White House.  There has been a significant 15 percent drop in support for Obama compared with his strong numbers in 2008, but Republicans are not making gains with Arab American voters either.  

There is good news and bad news for President Barack Obama in a recent poll of Arab American voters conducted by the Arab American Institute.  AAI President Jim Zogby said the president enjoys a 24 percentage point leader over his Republican challenger, former Massachusetts governor Mitt Romney.

"In this particular election, in the head-to-head between President Barack Obama and Mitt Romney, the president has a substantial 52 percent to 28 percent lead.  There are about 5 percent voting for minority candidates and about 16 percent who are not sure," said Zogby.

But, the bad news for the president is that 15 percent of Arab Americans who voted for Obama in 2008 have not yet declared their support for the president in this election.

The poll results also holds some bad news for Romney and Republicans - that their support among Arab Americans is steadily declining.

"The Republican numbers dropped from 27 [percent] to 22 [percent] from 2008, but the margin of Democrat over Republican still being more than two to one,  continues the trend that we saw from 2002 where the gap between the parties began to open up," said Zogby.

Zogby said that he attributes the growing gap in Arab American support for Republicans compared to Democrats, which began in 2002, to former President George W. Bush's policies on Iraq and the Middle East, and on civil liberty issues in the United States.  A growing number of Arab Americans, 24 percent, identify themselves as Independents.

Zogby said neither the Democratic nor the Republican Party has done much to reach out to Arab Americans in the 2012 campaign.  Arab Americans make up about 0.5 percent of voters who will cast a vote in the November 6 general election.

Zogby said that, just like other Americans, Arab Americans are primarily concerned about jobs and the economy, while 27 percent said foreign policy is important.

"When we asked what the most important issues were, the economy clearly was the number one concern," he said.

The survey shows that a strong majority of Arab Americans feel secure in their current jobs, and most Arab Americans express confidence that their children will live better lives than they do.  But almost half of Arab Americans are concerned about facing some form of discrimination because of their origin.

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Texas Town Residents Told to 'Just Leave' Ahead of Flood Threati
X
Greg Flakus
May 29, 2015 11:24 PM
Water from heavy rain in eastern and central Texas is now swelling rivers that flow into the Gulf of Mexico, threatening towns along their banks. VOA’s Greg Flakus visited the town of Wharton, southwest of Houston, where the Colorado River is close to cresting.
Video

Video Texas Town Residents Told to 'Just Leave' Ahead of Flood Threat

Water from heavy rain in eastern and central Texas is now swelling rivers that flow into the Gulf of Mexico, threatening towns along their banks. VOA’s Greg Flakus visited the town of Wharton, southwest of Houston, where the Colorado River is close to cresting.
Video

Video New York's One World Trade Center Observatory Opens to Public

From New Jersey to Long Island, from Northern suburbs to the Atlantic Ocean, with all of New York City in-between.  That view became available to the public Friday as the One World Trade Center Observatory opened in New York -- atop the replacement for the buildings destroyed in the September 11, 2001, attacks.  VOA’s Bernard Shusman reports.
Video

Video Seoul Sponsors Korean Unification Fair

With inter-Korean relations deteriorating over the North’s nuclear program, past military provocations and human rights abuses, many Koreans still hold out hope for eventual peaceful re-unification. VOA’s Brian Padden visited a “unification fair” held this week in Seoul, where border communities promoted the benefits of increased cooperation.
Video

Video Purple Door Coffeeshop: Changing Lives One Cup at a Time

For a quarter of his life, Kevin Persons lived on the street. Today, he is working behind the counter of an espresso bar, serving coffee and working to transition off the streets and into a home. Paul Vargas reports for VOA.
Video

Video Modular Robot Getting Closer to Reality

A robot being developed at Carnegie Mellon University has evolved into a multi-legged modular mechanical snake, able to move over rugged surfaces and explore the surroundings. Scientists say such machines could someday help in search and rescue operations. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Shanghai Hosts Big Consumer Electronics Show

Electronic gadgets are a huge success in China, judging by the first Asian Consumer Electronics Show, held this week in Shanghai. Over the course of two days, more than 20,000 visitors watched, tested and played with useful and some less-useful electronic devices exhibited by about 200 manufacturers. VOA’s George Putic has more.
Video

Video Forced to Return Home, Afghan Refugees Face Increased Hardship

Undocumented refugees returning to Afghanistan from Pakistan have no jobs, no support system, and no home return to, and international aid agencies say they and the government are overwhelmed and under-resourced. Ayesha Tanzeem has more from Kabul.
Video

Video Britain Makes Controversial Move to Crack Down on Extremism

Britain is moving to tighten controls on extremist rhetoric, even when it does not incite violence or hatred -- a move that some are concerned might unduly restrict basic freedoms. It is an issue many countries are grappling with as extremist groups gain power in the Middle East, fueled in part by donations and fighters from the West. VOA’s Al Pessin reports from London.
Video

Video 3D Printer Makes Replica of Iconic Sports Car

Cars with parts made by 3D printers are already on the road, but engineers are still learning about this new technology. While testing the possibility of printing an entire car, researchers at the U.S. Department of Energy recently created an electric-powered replica of an iconic sports roadster. VOA’s George Putic has more.
Video

Video Al-Shabab Recruitment Drive Still on In Kenya

The al-Shabab militants that have long battled for control of Somalia also have recruited thousands of young people in Kenya, leaving many families disconsolate. Mohammed Yusuf recently visited the Kenyan town of Isiolo, and met with relatives of those recruited, as well as a many who have helped with the recruiting.
Video

Video A Small Oasis on Kabul's Outskirts Provides Relief From Security Tensions

When people in Kabul want to get away from the city and relax, many choose Qargha Lake, a small resort on the outskirts of Kabul. Ayesha Tanzeem visited and talked with people about the precious oasis.
Video

Video Kenyans Lament Losing Sons to al-Shabab

There is agony, fear and lost hope in the Kenyan town of Isiolo, a key target of a new al-Shabab recruitment drive. VOA's Mohammed Yusuf visits Isiolo to speak with families and at least one man who says he was a recruiter.
Video

Video Scientists Say Plankton More Important Than Previously Thought

Tiny ocean creatures called plankton are mostly thought of as food for whales and other large marine animals, but a four-year global study discovered, among other things, that plankton are a major source of oxygen on our planet. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Kenya’s Capital Sees Rise in Shisha Parlors

In Kenya, the smoking of shisha, a type of flavored tobacco, is the latest craze. Patrons are flocking to shisha parlors to smoke and socialize. But the practice can be addictive and harmful, though many dabblers may not realize the dangers, according to a new review. Lenny Ruvaga has more on the story for VOA from Nairobi, Kenya.

VOA Blogs