The fight for the Israeli electorate’s vote, unlike previous elections, is no longer about which party will be the biggest, but which parties will pass the electoral threshold. According to two polls conducted on Tuesday, at least one prominent left-wing party, Meretz, will not pass the threshold, and thus will no longer be in the Knesset, should a government manage to form after the upcoming elections.
According to the election poll reported by Channel 12 News, the right-wing block will have a total of 59 seats even with the Likud, both Charedi parties, Betzalel Smotrich’s party, and Naftali Bennett’s Yamina party, should they choose to join Likud this time around.
The poll ranked Likud as taking home 28 seats, Yamina with 12, Shas with 8, UTJ with 6, and the Religious Zionist party with 5.
Regarding the anti-Netanyahu camp, Yesh Atid will become the second-largest party in the Knesset with 19 seats, Gideon Sa’ar’s New Hope party will garner 14, the Joint Arab List will gain 9, the Labor party continues to rise in the polls and will take 7, Yisrael Beiteinu will also take 7, and the Blue and White party is stable at 5.
The poll conducted by Channel 13 News was similar except that Meretz did pass the threshold and succeeded at garnering the 4 mandatory seats required to enter the Knesset. Ra’am, another Arab party that broke off of the joint list, will also obtain 4 seats, as will the Blue and White party. This poll also shows Likud falling short of being able to form a government. The poll projects the Likud to gain 27 seats, New Hope with only 11, UTJ with 7, and Shas will fall to 7. Yesh Atid will gain 19, Yamina will win 11, the Joint Arab List will gain 4, Yisrael Beiteinu – 7, the Labor party – 6, and the Religious Zionist party – 5.
With the political map and polls being what they are, it is difficult to imagine how Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu, or any other leader for that matter, will succeed in forming a government after the March 23rd elections. Unless the polls are dramatically wrong, or a number of the smaller parties decide to join forces with non-typical political partners, Israel will likely be headed to yet another election sometime in the summer.
(YWN Israel Desk – Jerusalem)