Jewish Journal


June 27, 2012

Study: Berman won among Jews in June primary, Sherman won everyone else



A map of California's 30th Congressional District in the West San Fernando Valley, where Reps. Brad Sherman and Howard Berman are locked in a tough and expensive fight for reelection. Image courtesy RPData

According to a new study of the results of the 30th district primary held earlier this month, Rep. Brad Sherman, who finished first overall, was bested among Jewish voters by his opponent, Rep. Howard Berman.

“Voters with Jewish surnames supported Berman very strongly,” concluded the study, which was released on June 27 and conducted by RPData, a firm founded by redistricting consultant Paul Mitchell.

But Sherman, who finished 10 points ahead of Berman in the primary earlier this month, won more Asian and Latino votes than any other candidate, and also finished first with voters not expressing a party preference. Larger numbers of voters are expected to turn out to vote in November than they did in June, and among those voters, the greatest growth is expected among Latino voters and voters not expressing a party preference.

As a result, Mitchell and his colleagues believe that the significance of Berman’s winning among Jews wouldn’t be sufficient to propel him to victory in November.

“The Jewish strength for Berman is a strong messaging point in that campaign and likely a point of pride, however these voters are not going to exceed the 13% of the electorate seen in the June Primary,” the study read. “Their strength within the overall electorate could actually decline.”

RPData also found that among Republicans, who voted for Republican Mark Reed “by a sizeable margin” earlier this month, Sherman was the second-most popular candidate, winning more Republican votes than either of the two other Republicans on the ballot.

The study cautioned that Sherman’s strong showing among Republicans in June should not be taken as a prediction of a repeat result in November. It called Republicans “an unknown entity,” and said they might simply skip out on voting in the head-to-head race between Democrats in November.

For the full text (pdf) of the RPData study, click here.

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