United States / 06-04-2017

Antisemitism in politics and the 2016 Campaign

Source: ADL

The January-February survey found broad concern about antisemitism seen during the 2016 presidential campaign, with most Americans saying Donald Trump should have done more to discourage it.


A plurality of those polled (47 percent) said there was more antisemitism during the 2016 campaign than previously, and 49 percent said candidate Trump should have done more to discourage it, compared with 36 percent who said he did enough to discourage antisemitism. In the October 2016 poll, 68 percent said campaign rhetoric “decreased tolerance and respect for all races and religions.”


Although only one-third of Americans (33 percent) think President Trump is personally antisemitic, most believe he holds a variety of prejudiced views – with 59 percent saying he is anti-Muslim, 54 percent saying he holds racist views, and 53 percent saying he is anti-Latino.


Overall, 62 percent of Americans are concerned the nation’s politics have become less stable, up from 54 percent in 2015.


Muslim Americans

This year’s poll is the first time the ADL Global 100 examined American Muslims’ attitudes toward Jews and to their own place in American society. Thirty-four (34) percent of American Muslims hold antisemitic views, but that is far lower than Muslims in Europe, where 55 percent hold these views, and the Middle East/North Africa, where 75 percent hold antisemitic views. In a further sign of contrast, a majority of Muslims in those two regions hold unfavorable views of Israel, yet 50 percent of Muslim Americans polled had a favorable view of Israel.


Six in 10 Muslim Americans say they are concerned about the possible rise of Islamic extremism in the U.S., and 51 percent believe Muslim leaders in the U.S. have “done as much as they should” to counter extremism. Another 39 percent say Muslim leaders “have not done enough to speak out” against Islamic extremists.


Eighty-nine (89) percent of Muslim Americans are concerned about violence directed at them and Islamic institutions in the U.S., and 64 percent said that they do not believe the government is doing enough to ensure their safety.  On a related point, while 72 percent of Muslims said they do not believe they need to hide their faith, 66 percent said they feel less safe in America since President Trump was elected.


Other Findings

  • About half of Americans are familiar with the so-called “alt-right” and 62 percent consider this movement to be antisemitic.


  • Two out of three Americans (67 percent) support Latino immigration to the U.S.


  • 53 percent believe the U.S. has a moral obligation to allow more Muslim refugees to enter the country because of the threat the refugees face in their native countries, compared with 34 percent who say we do not have such an obligation.