The 2016 presidential election is getting closer and it appears that the Jewish vote will take a different path. Thursday’s Wall Street Journal says there could be surprising results.
The world has seen the widening rift between President Obama and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. That significant rift may also signal a shift in Jewish voting.
Almost 24 years ago, in 1992, Republican President George H.W. Bush only held 11 percent of the Jewish vote in his unsuccessful re-election bid against Bill Clinton. That should not be the outcome for the eventual Republican nominee this time around, if the WSJ story can be believed.
By 2008, Republican John McCain brought in 22 percent of the Jewish vote, and in 2012 Mitt Romney won 31 percent. The increasing numbers appear to show clear support for Republicans by the Jewish-American community. That is very good for Republicans, but not at all good for the Democratic Party, which thinks it has the Jewish vote wrapped up.
That are increasing signs of growing discontent with Democrats and at the same time, growing support for the GOP among Jews. Pundits say that is largely due to dissatisfaction with President Barack Obama and his policies toward Israel. The incident in April did not help Democrats at all.
Each year the Jewish Republican Coalition hosts a spring meeting at Sheldon Adelson’s Venetian Resort Hotel Casino in Las Vegas. Two years ago, there were less than 400 in attendance. In April this year there were 800. That is a startling change by the Jewish voters.
Below is a list of the “75 Most Influential Jewish Republicans.” The most influential person in that group especially thinking about election cycles is Sheldon Adelson himself.
Adelson is the chairman and CEO of the Las Vegas Sands Corp., and his holdings include the Venetian. He is worth more than $31 billion, according to Forbes. Adelson reportedly contributed $100 million to Republicans in the most recent election cycle (2012). He is expected to spend heavily in support of the GOP in 2016. The fact that Adelson is on the side of Republican and is expected to stand up big, is not good political news for Democrats.
Top 75 Most Influential Jewish Republicans
Not all of the people on this list are actually registered Republicans. At a minimum, they consider their public identity Republican or lean heavily toward Republican.
1. Sheldon Adelson, billionaire businessman and major Republican donor.
2. William Kristol, founder and editor of the political magazine The Weekly Standard and a political commentator on several networks.
3. Charles Krauthammer, syndicated columnist, author, political commentator, and frequent panelist on Fox News.
4. Steve Schwarzman, financier, philanthropist, chairman and CEO of the Blackstone Group, a private equity firm.
5. Mark Levin, author and syndicated radio show host, president of the Landmark Legal Foundation, and contributor to National Review Online and other media outlets.
6. David Brooks, New York Times political columnist.
7. Henry Kissinger, Nobel Peace Prize winner, former secretary of State and adviser to two Republican presidents.
8. Michael Chertoff, former Homeland Security secretary.
9. Eric Cantor, former U.S. congressman from Virginia who served as the House Majority Leader.
10. Michael Mukasey, former U.S. attorney general.
11. Paul Singer, billionaire hedge fund manager and political activist.
12. Ronald Lauder, president of the World Jewish Congress.
13. Michael Savage, author, activist, political commentator, and host of the popular nationally syndicated radio program “The Savage Nation.”
14. Matthew Brooks, executive director of the Republican Jewish Coalition.
15. Matt Drudge, creator and editor of the Drudge Report.
16. Bernard Marcus, co-founder and former CEO of Home Depot, Inc. and member of the Board of Directors of the Republican Jewish Coalition.
17. Mel Sembler, shopping mall magnate in Florida who backed Jeb Bush during his gubernatorial runs and supports Bush for president.
18. Wayne Berman, businessman and lobbyist who was a senior adviser to the Bush-Cheney campaign in 2000 and 2004.
19. Henry Kravis, equity billionaire who hosted a fundraiser for Jeb Bush in February.
20. Norm Coleman, former U.S. senator from Minnesota who left office in 2009.
21. Ed Snider, Chairman of Comcast Spectacor and owner of Philadelphia Flyers hockey team.
22. Bruce Kovner, hedge fund owner and former chairman of the American Enterprise Institute.
23. Lee Zeldin, currently serving in the U.S. House of Representatives representing New York’s 1st district. He is the only Jewish Republican in Congress.
24. Ari Fleischer, media consultant and former White House Press Secretary for President George W. Bush.
25. Susan Golding, former mayor of San Diego, now president and CEO of the Child Abuse Prevention Foundation in San Diego, and board member of the International Republican Institute.
26. Jay Dardenne, lieutenant governor of Louisiana.
27. Ben Stein, writer, lawyer, actor, and commentator on political and economic issues.
28. John Paulson, hedge fund billionaire who helped raise funds for Mitt Romney’s presidential campaign.
29. David Horowitz, founder and current president of the David Horowitz Freedom Center and editor of FrontPage Magazine.
30. Dennis Prager, nationally syndicated radio talk show host, columnist, author, and public speaker.
31. David Frum, political commentator, author, senior editor at The Atlantic, and former White House staffer under President George W. Bush credited with coining the phrase “axis of evil.”
32. Steve Malzberg, veteran radio talk show host, substitute host on Fox News Channel, and now host of “The Steve Malzberg Show” on Newsmax TV.
33. David Zucker, film director, producer and screenwriter whose credits include “Airplane!”
34. Michael Medved, radio show host, author, political commentator and film critic.
35. David Flaum, national chairman of the Republican Jewish Coalition.
36. Rabbi Shmuley Boteach, best-selling author, TV host, public speaker, and founder of This World. Lawrence Ellison, founder of the software firm Oracle Corporation who hosted a fundraiser for Sen. Rand Paul last year.
38. Jonah Goldberg, columnist, author, and editor-at-large for National Review Online.
39. Mort Klein, president of the Zionist Organization of America and Republican donor.
40. Linda Lingle, governor of Hawaii from 2002 to 2010, now an adviser to Illinois Gov. Bruce Rauner.
41. Larry A. Mizel, a businessman and philanthropist who is chairman of the Simon Wiesenthal Center and a member of the National Board of the American Israel Public Affairs Committee.
42. Howard Kohr, executive director of the American Israel Public Affairs Committee.
43. Jennifer Rubin, neoconservative Washington Post columnist.
44. Jeff Jacoby, syndicated Boston Globe columnist.
45. Ben Shapiro, political commentator, best-selling author, radio talk show host, and media consultant.
46. Al Michaels, sportscaster now with NBC Sports.
47. Adam Sandler, actor and former “Saturday Night Live” cast member.
48. Steve Wynn, Las Vegas casino mogul and contributor to the Republican Governors Association.
49. Norman Braman, car dealership magnate, past president of the Greater Miami Jewish Federation, and financial backer of presidential candidate Marco Rubio.
50. Earle I. Mack, businessman and former U.S. ambassador who served as chairman and CEO of the New York State Council on the Arts.
51. Nicolas Muzin, Orthodox Jewish political adviser to presidential candidate Ted Cruz.
52. Howard Jonas, telecommunications and energy magnate and Republican financial contributor.
53. Marc Goldman, multi-millionaire businessman and major contributor to Republican candidates.
54. Richard Roberts, New Jersey philanthropist who helped fund a tour of Israel for Sen. Rand Paul and supports Gov. Scott Walker for president.
55. Beny Alagem, founder and former chief executive of Packard Bell, owner of the Beverly Hilton Hotel, and supporter of Mitt Romney’s presidential campaign.
56. Michael Dell, founder and CEO of the computer giant Dell Inc.
57. Steve Ballmer, former CEO of Microsoft and current owner of the NBA’s Los Angeles Clippers.
58. Stanley Tate, AIPAC founder and real estate mogul.
59. Jerry Bruckheimer, film and TV producer responsible for the “CSI” series, and a Republican campaign contributor.
60. Pamela Geller, political activist, commentator, and co-founder of Stop Islamization of America.
61. Barbara Winston, socialite and philanthropist, daughter-in-law to the late Harry Winston.
62. Ken Mehlman, former chairman of the Republican National Committee and campaign manager for George W. Bush’s 2004 presidential campaign.
63. John Podhoretz, editor of Commentary magazine, columnist for the New York Post, and former speechwriter for Presidents Ronald Reagan and George H.W. Bush.
64. Geraldo Rivera, talk show host and Fox News correspondent.
65. Ben Bernanke, economist and former chairman of the Federal Reserve.
66. Joshua Bolten, White House Chief of Staff for President George W. Bush.
67. Matthew Brooks, director of the Jewish Policy Center and Executive Director of the Republican Jewish Coalition.
68. Alan Greenspan, economics consultant who served as chairman of the Federal Reserve from 1987 to 2006.
69. Lewis M. Eisenberg, founder and former chairman of the Republican Leadership Council and former chairman of the Finance Committee of the Republican National Committee.
70. Sam Fox, businessman, former ambassador, and a major Republican donor.
71. Elliott Broidy, businessman, fundraiser, former Finance Committee chairman for the Republican National Committee and member of the Board of Directors for the Republican Jewish Coalition.
72. Fred Zeidman, businessman and fundraiser who was appointed by President George W. Bush to serve as the chairman of the U.S. Holocaust Museum.
73. Cheryl Halpern, former chair of the Corporation for Public Broadcasting and former chairman of the Republican Jewish Coalition’s Board of Directors.
74. Robert I. Schostak, until February the chairman of the Michigan Republican Party.
75. Florence Shapiro, former president pro tempore of the Texas Senate, appointed by President George W. Bush to serve on the Honorary Delegation to accompany him to Jerusalem for the celebration of the 60th anniversary of the State of Israel.