Poll: Jews still favour Tories despite huge swing to Labour

Support for Labour among Jews has risen by 50 points since 2019 – but Sunak more trusted than Starmer, exclusive JC survey reveals


Jewish voters remain marginally more drawn to the Conservative Party than Labour despite a collapse in support for the Tories since the last general election, an exclusive JC opinion poll has revealed.

The survey of more than 500 voters who identify as Jewish, carried out by Survation, put the Tory lead at just 9 percentage points – a dramatic drop from the equivalent 2019 figure of 59 per cent, when Labour was led by Jeremy Corbyn.

In what appears to be a vindication of Sir Keir Starmer’s efforts to root out antisemitism from his party, 33 per cent of Jews polled said they intended to vote Labour, against 42 per cent Tory.

The small lead for the Conservatives among Jews, however – which stands in stark contrast with the rest of the UK – suggests Labour is still not trusted by some segments of the community.

This was underlined by the “trustworthiness” scores that Jewish voters gave each party leader: 22 per cent rated Sunak at 7 out of 10, while 16 per cent gave Starmer the same score.

The poll also revealed that Jewish support for the Liberal Democrats has slumped. Shortly before the 2019 election, a Survation poll of Jewish voters placed them second, on 21 per cent, but the new JC survey, conducted by the same company at the end of last week, places the Lib Dems a distant fourth, on just per 6 cent – one point behind Reform UK.

The JC survey also found that most Jews feel “safer” voting Labour now than they did when it was led by Corbyn in 2019.

The swing towards Labour away from the Tories among Jews uncovered by the poll echoes recent surveys of the broader public.

The fact that Jewish voting intentions have been moving in step with the country at large suggests that Labour is set to make sweeping gains from the Conservatives in seats with big Jewish electorates, such as Finchley and Golders Green (which is 21 per cent Jewish), Hertsmere (17 per cent), Hendon (15.1 per cent) and Bury South (estimated 15 per cent) – and indeed, this was also predicted by another Survation survey that projected results in individual constituencies last weekend.

To conduct the JC survey, Survation polled a panel of 504 demographically representative Jewish voters by landline and mobile telephone over a five-day period ending on June 14.

Its poll in the run-up to the 2019 election found that a staggering 87 per cent of Jewish voters then believed Corbyn was antisemitic, while 47 per cent said they would seriously consider emigrating if he were to become prime minister.

These negative views explain why just 5 per cent of Jews said they planned to vote for Corbyn. However, the new figures show that Jewish support for Labour is now more than six times as high.

Asked whether they thought Starmer had been successful in rooting out antisemitism – so fulfilling the pledge he made on his first day as Labour’s leader in 2020 – a total of 54 per cent said he had been “very successful” or “fairly successful”. The same percentage said they would feel “safer” voting Labour than in 2019, and only 14 per cent less safe.

Polling experts said the Tory lead could be partly explained by the fact that the Jewish electorate is significantly older – almost a third is over 65 – compared to a national average of 24 per cent. It is also thought that Jews are more likely to be affluent, which also makes them more likely to support the Tories.

When the pollsters asked which election issue Jewish voters considered most important in determining their choice, the greatest proportion – 23 per cent – said the cost of living. Antisemitism was ranked first by 19 per cent, healthcare and the NHS by 15 per cent, and policy towards the current Israel-Hamas war by 11 per cent.

Last week, the JC revealed that parties’ attitudes to the Middle East were playing a significant role in seats with high proportions of Muslims.

Our poll suggested the same is true where there are many Jews: more than three-quarters – 77 per cent – said the UK’s relationship Israel would be “very” or “fairly” important when they finally came to decide whom to vote for on 4 July.

Like the rest of the electorate, Jewish voters appear to have been left unimpressed by the Tories’ conduct of their campaign so far, with 28 per cent saying the Conservatives have performed “very” or “fairly” well but during the campaign, but 65 per cent “very” or “fairly” badly.

In contrast, 58 per cent said Labour had performed fairly or very well, and only 33 per cent very or fairly badly.

The poll also suggests that the turnout among Jews will be high, with more than 80 per cent saying they were “certain” or very likely to vote.

Claudia Mendoza, the chief executive of the Jewish Leadership Council, which commissioned the 2019 Survation poll of Jewish voters, told the JC the new results were highly significant.

“The Labour Party has undergone significant changes since the previous leadership,” she said, pointing out that the party had carried out sweeping reforms to its disciplinary processes.

“The relationship between the community and the party is in a completely different place and it is unsurprising that many Jews feel able to return to the party they had previously supported,” Mendoza said.

Mike Katz, National Chair of the Jewish Labour Movement (JLM), commented: “This poll shows what we are picking it up on the doorsteps – Jewish people understand that Keir Starmer has made good on his promise of zero tolerance for antisemitism and that Labour is a totally changed party from the last general election.

“We now see Corbyn kicked out of the party and a significant number of Jewish candidates and JLM allies running for Parliament. We don’t expect every Jew to vote Labour; but we want them to have a proper choice at the ballot box – a choice they were denied in 2019.”

A Board of Deputies spokesperson told the JC: “This survey suggests that British Jews, like the population at large, are concerned about key issues such as the cost of living and healthcare. However, with the surge in antisemitism in the UK since October 7, it is clear that our community also expects that any party seeking to form the next government to prove that it will be vigilant and proactive in combating hate, as well as ensuring that the UK’s relationship with Israel remains strong.”

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