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Harris Poll Indicates U.S. Public Opinion Swinging Towards Egypt

January 12, 1979
See Original Daily Bulletin From This Date

Pollster Louis Harris reported today that “For the first time in the long history of the dispute between Israel and Egypt, American public opinion is swinging towards the Egyptian position.”

According to the latest Harris Poll “a 37 percent plurality now feels that Egypt is right in demanding that Israel give some guarantees about Palestinian self-rule as part of the separate peace treaty between the two countries. A smaller 30 percent agree with Israel that such changes violate the basic agreements that were reached last year at the Camp David summit,” Harris reported. “Another four percent feel that neither side is right, two percent see merit on both sides and 27 percent of Americans are not sure who is right.”

Breaking down the poll responses by religious and ethnic groups, Harris reported that Catholics support Egypt by a majority of 39-28 percent and white Protestants by 35-30 percent.” Jews feel that Israel is right by an overwhelming 77-10 percent,” Harris reported. He observed that “there is no doubt that part of the current surge of sympathy for Egyptian President Anwar Sadat stems from a sense that Egypt is taking a high risk in continuing to advocate peace without any visible backing from other Arab elements.”

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