Dr. Melissa Deckman is a Professor of Political Science at Washington College and a PRRI Affiliated Scholar. Her research interests center on the intersection of religion, women, and politics. She has written in the past about the Christian Right’s participation in school board politics. Her most recent work is as co-editor and contributor to Curriculum and the Culture Wars: Debating the Bible’s Place in Public Schools. PRRI sat down with Dr. Deckman to discuss the significance of the book.
If you haven’t already seen it, check out the 2012 Jewish Values Survey, a new national of survey 1,004 Jewish Americans – the first of its kind conducted by a non-Jewish research organization. The survey examines the religious and cultural values that are shaping Jews’ attitudes toward political participation and social action. You can take a look at the full report for a detailed picture, but a few highlights:
- Eight months before the election, Jewish voters are strongly supportive of Barack Obama over a generic Republican candidate.
- More than 4-in-10 (42%) American Jews say that being Jewish is either very important for the most important thing in their lives. Approximately 3-in-10 (29%) say being Jewish is somewhat important, and approximately 3-in-10 (29%) say being Jewish is either not too important or not at all important in their lives.
- American Jews say that good diplomacy rather than military strength is the best way to ensure peace (63% vs. 24% respectively).
- When asked which qualities are most important to their Jewish identity, nearly half of American Jews (46%) cite a commitment to social equality – twice as many as cite support for Israel (20%) or religious observance (17%).
- Nearly two-thirds (64%) of American Jews agree that the government should do more to reduce the gap between the rich and the poor.
To read the entire report, head to our research page.