As the race tightens in key states on election night, the Jewish vote becomes more important in swing states such as Ohio, Florida, and Pennsylvania. Though Jews make up a small percentage of the population, over 80% of eligible Jewish voters typically show up to the polls in presidential election years (the average voter turnout rate is closer to 60%) and contribute half of all donations to the Democratic Party.
Earlier today, the Forward analyzed four key heavily Jewish counties in Florida which have historically had an outsized impact on the outcome of presidential elections.
In Pennsylvania, Jewish voters are more likely to support Clinton and could tip the balance of three counties in a close election. In Allegheny, Bucks, and Montgomery counties, collectively home to 2.7 million of the state’s Jews, only 43.2% of the population are registered Democrats according to recent research by the Steinhardt Social Research Institute — but on average, 58.6% of Jewish voters are registered as Democrats.
While Trump could still win the presidential race while losing Pennsylvania, if he also loses either Georgia or Arizona, “the door would effectively be closed.”
How Jewish voters will impact the race in Ohio is less clear. Just 55.5% of Jewish voters registered in Cuyahoga, Geauga, and Lake counties are registered Democrats, compared with 44.3% of overall registered voters in the counties. Cuyahoga, by far the largest county of the three, has gone to the Democratic nominee in all four of the last presidential elections. Geauga county has consistently voted for the Republican nominee and Lake county has narrowly gone to the Republican nominee in all but the 2008 election, when Obama garnered 49.45% of the vote.