Is this man the next US pres­i­dent?

The Jewish Chronicle - - Front Page -

chances are, but it would be fool­ish to write him off. Texas is a strong base from which to launch a bid for na­tional power, and his so­cial and re­li­gious con­ser­vatism should give him some de­cent ap­peal among im­por­tant sec­tions of the elec­torate.

But will that same re­li­gious con­ser­vatism prove counter-pro­duc­tive among other groups, par­tic­u­larly Jews who, though small in num­ber (less than two per cent of the pop­u­la­tion), can be im­por­tant elec­torally in swing states like Ohio, Penn­syl­va­nia or Florida? Much de­pends on whether Perry and other such can­di­dates come across as di­vi­sive or in­clu­sive.

It seems un­likely there’s much to worry about on that score. Most Chris­tian con­ser­va­tives in the US have good re­la­tions with their Jewish com­pa­tri­ots, and they’re strongly sup­port­ive of Is­rael. “My faith re­quires me to sup­port Is­rael,” Perry averred in 2009.

That kind of talk could tip a por­tion of the Jewish vote in a Chris­tian con­ser­va­tive direc­tion, should Perry or some­one like him get the can­di­dacy.

Given the deep dis­ap­point­ment among many US Jews with Pres­i­dent Obama’s attitude to the Jewish state, Repub­li­can strate­gists are cer­tain to make a pitch for their votes, 78 per cent of which went Demo­crat in 2008. Never say never in Amer­ica. An ap­peal to Je­sus might just swing it for the Jews. Robin Shep­herd is di­rec­tor, in­ter­na­tional af­fairs, at the Henry Jack­son So­ci­ety and owner/pub­lisher of The Com­men­ta­tor

PHOTO: AP

Repub­li­can can­di­date Perry asked for Je­sus to save Amer­ica

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