Pollster Opposites

Pollster Opposites

Regarding “Taking America’s Pulse On Israeli-Palestinian Conflict” (Jan. 2), the statistical sampling techniques used in poll taking produce results within a range, and those results are a function of how the questions are asked, to whom they are directed and numerous other factors. Even where the polltaker is highly respected and uses reputable sampling techniques, the results often vary. 

Thus, while Shibley Telhami’s poll indicates that Americans may be subtly shifting in their support for Israel, another 2014 poll conducted by McLaughlin Associates for the Zionist Organization of America indicates the opposite, that Americans strongly support Israel and disagree with President Obama’s Middle East policies.

It might be useful to draw on the results of a third poll sponsored by an organization having a more neutral point of view. An ABC News/Washington Post poll, conducted in 2013, shows that 55 percent of Americans continue to sympathize with Israel versus 9 percent who side more with the Palestinian Authority. That same poll showed that seven in 10 Americans want the United States to leave Israel and the Palestinians to work things out, rather than becoming proactively involved with the negotiation process. 


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