WASHINGTON (JTA) — A majority of Americans oppose a declaration of Palestinian statehood absent a peace agreement with Israel, a new poll finds.
The poll released this week by the Israel Project showed 51 percent of registered U.S. voters oppose a proposal that the Palestinian Authority "unilaterally declare an independent Palestinian state WITHOUT a signed peace treaty with Israel," while 31 percent support it.
Republicans were likelier to oppose such a proposal, at 66 opposed to 21 percent in favor, in constrast to Democrats, with 44 percent opposed and 33 percent in favor, and independents, with 48 percent opposed and 37 percent in favor.
The question is looming because Palestinians are pushing for UNited Nations recognition of statehood in September as a means of pressing Israel to freeze settlements.
Palestinians walked away from direct talks last September when Israel would not extend a 10-month settlement freeze.
The poll also found that voters perceive Israel as working harder for peace.
Respondents who said Israel was making an effort outnumbered those who said it was not, 61 percent to 29 percent. Those who said Palestinians were not making an effort to achieve peace outnumbered those who did 53 percent to 46 percent.
The poll, carried out by Public Opinion Strategies, surveyed 800 voters between April 5 and 7 and has a margin of error of 3.46 percentage points.