Each year, the Jewish Daily Forward lists 50 influential Jewish leaders in the U.S. This year, the list includes politicians like Rep. Gabrielle Gifford and Anthony Weiner, celebs like Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban, as well as activists, scholars and religious figures.
The honorary 51st on the 2011 list is President Barack Obama, a Christian whose politics have elicited a range of responses from American Jews. Some continue to support the Democratic president (who appointed a number of Jewish staffers, including fellow Forward 50 honoree Rahm Emanuel), but others have been turned off by his approach to Israel. It’s hard to gauge the Jewish population on Obama generally, since polls are mixed.
“Support him, loathe him or feel wildly ambivalent – whatever you think of Barack Obama, the 44th president of the United States has done more than any other non-Jew we can think of to shape the American Jewish story in 2011,” wrote the Forward, a historically liberal publication.