Jonathan Lis
December 18, 2012 - 1:00am

Two-thirds of centrist voters - defined as Labor Party and Yesh Atid supporters - would not support a party willing to compromise on Jerusalem, according to a poll commissioned by the rightward-leaning Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs.

And half of Labor Party voters prefer "defensible borders" - defined in Israel to include the Jordan Valley and large settlement blocks - to peace agreements, according to the poll commissioned by the Jerusalem Center, which is headed by the popularizer of the defensible borders concept, former ambassador to the United Nations, Dore Gold.

The poll, conducted during November by Mina Tzemach's Dahaf institute, will be presented next Thursday at the Jerusalem Center's annual meeting. The findings often reveal surprising positions of centrist and rightist voters regarding Israel's foreign and security policies, as about 20 percent of centrist voters hold hawkish positions, while some 20 percent of rightist voters tend to support more dovish policies.

Half of the centrist voters said they would not vote for a party willing to evacuate the Jordan Valley. Also, 80 percent of Labor supporters and 62 percent of Yesh Atid voters attach importance to the fact that the Palestinians recognize Israel as a Jewish state, while 60 percent and 71 percent respectively do not believe that retreating to the 1967 borders and the partition of Jerusalem will lead to peace.

Meanwhile, 57 percent of Labor voters and 65 percent of Yesh Atid supporters do not believe that the Palestinian leadership can reach binding decisions to end the conflict, compared to 97 percent of Shas voters and 91 percent of Likud voters.

Asked what is preferable, so-called defensible borders or peace agreements, 50 percent of Labor voters and 45 percent of Yesh Atid supporters preferred defensible borders.

Among right-wing voters, 22 percent of Likud supporters prefer peace arrangements to defensible borders. Asked whether, in the context of a peace agreement, they would support the evacuation of settlements not included in the large settlement blocs, 35 percent of Yisrael Beiteinu voters and 30 percent of Habayit Hayehudi voters said they would. In addition, 30 percent of Habayit Hayehudi voters said Israel should not react to the Palestinian Authority's efforts to be recognized as a state, while 35 percent of them opposed annexation of lands as a response to the Palestinian move.

Among Labor voters, 31 percent support punitive actions against the Palestinians, but most opposed annexation.


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