(CNN) – On the eve of Mitt Romney's overseas visit to Israel, a new poll released Friday indicates Jewish Americans favor the president over Mitt Romney by a solid margin.
According to the Gallup survey, 68% of Jewish Americans back President Barack Obama, while 25% support the presumptive Republican presidential nominee.
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The numbers follow what some have called a politically timed signing of the U.S.-Israeli security act by the president declaring support for the country before Romney's visit to the Jewish state. Obama signed the bill passed by Congress pledging $70 million to increase U.S. security ties with Israel.
Romney's visit to Israel is part of a three-country foreign policy swing that will take the former Massachusetts governor from London to Tel Aviv on Saturday, then to Poland next week. The Republican candidate is expected to promote a strong alliance between Israel and the United States while meeting with top Israeli officials.
According to the poll, Romney's meetings with Israeli leaders, including Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, could garner more support from Republicans who are more in favor of both the prime minister and Israel than independents and Democrats.
But Jewish Americans tend to be Democratic voters and, as the polling suggests, while Republicans seem to have a more favorable view of Israel than Democrats, Jewish voters will most likely remain aligned to the president.
Obama topped Republican Sen. John McCain in 2008 among registered Jewish American voters, 78% to McCain's 21%, according to the National Jewish Democratic Council.
The Jewish electorate is one of the most dependable in the U.S. with 80% of eligible voters showing up at the polls for the last election. Turnout among all eligible voters in 2008 was 57%. And while Jews make up only 2% of the population they comprise 4% of the electorate.
Romney may be looking for a more media friendly visit following a slew of negative headlines in London responding to an NBC interview in which the presumptive GOP nominee said the preparation for the Olympic Games were 'disconcerting.'
Romney has said that he will not discuss American foreign policy on foreign soil characterizing this trip as an opportunity to "listen and learn." But that didn't stop him from criticizing the president on American soil prior to jumping the pond.
In an interview with the Jewish newspaper, Hayom, following a speech at the Veterans of Foreign Wars convention in Reno on Tuesday, Romney blasted Obama's handling of Israel, saying the president has bruised the country's ties with the Jewish state and instead offered his own course of action should he become president.
"I would treat Israel like the friend and ally it is," Romney said in an interview, which was not published until Friday.
Romney renewed criticism of the president for comments Obama made at the United Nations in 2009. At the time, Obama criticized Israel on the issue of settlements, taking a similar position as his predecessor's administration: "We continue to call on Palestinians to end incitement against Israel, and we continue to emphasize that America does not accept the legitimacy of continued Israeli settlements."
In the interview, Romney said: "I cannot imagine going to the United Nations, as Obama did, and criticizing Israel in front of the world. You don't criticize your allies in public to achieve the applause of your foes."
The Gallup poll was conducted from July 9-12 with a random sample of 1,014 adults aged 18 and older living in the United States. The sampling error is plus or minus four percentage points.
- CNN's Ashley Killough and CNN Senior National Editor Dave Schechter contributed to this report
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