Are American Jews Moving Right?

Jewish progressives now face a prospect unimaginable until recently. Anti-Semitism is surging not in “MAGA” strongholds but in the very urban refuges they have long called home, such as New York, San Francisco, Los Angeles, London, and Paris. And universities, long cherished by Jews, have turned into the leading incubators of anti-Semitism, as evidenced by the recent protest encampments.

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This trend predates October 7. For years, students have felt it acceptable to ban kosher food (except from anti-Israel suppliers) and to promote anti-Israel views, often with the help of generous funding from Muslim states, such as Saudi Arabia and Qatar. Progressives on campus in recent years should not have been surprised when groups at Ivy League schools like Harvard openly celebrated Hamas’s pogrom, or when one Cornell professor called the massacre “exhilarating.”

Faculty like Berkeley Law School dean Erwin Chemerinsky seemed largely to ignore the rise of racialized and anti-Semitic politics. Now Chemerinsky, a well-known progressive, says that “nothing has prepared me for the antisemitism” rife at his and other campuses. Jewish progressives of his kind are something of an endangered species.

Ed Morrissey

Chemerinsky isn't going to move to the Right; he may not move appreciably to the center. What he may do is to stop supporting Democrats. That may be the path that progressive Jews choose in the US too, deciding to disavow their current party and end up relatively homeless in the political sense, at least for a while. Lifelong habits and identities don't change on a dime.

So don't expect a huge swing in November, but perhaps a drop in participation by Jewish voters, which may be impactful on its own. If the GOP can continue to make an attractive case for their support, that could change over the next few years. 

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