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Row Officers

Israeli elections of 2013

by: ThomasD

Wed Jan 16, 2013 at 15:01:54 PM EST

This is a summary of where the Israeli elections, scheduled for January 22nd, stand. I'd be happy to answer any question you may have. Should be noted that English is not my first language and I apologize for any mistakes.
ThomasD :: Israeli elections of 2013
Early notes: When reviewing Israeli politics one should remember that what makes a party part of the centre left block or the centre right block is their general policies in the foreign affairs division. That means that a socialist party (and theoretically also a communist party) could be considered a right wing party depending on their ideas regarding Syria and the PO. A few other notes of significance:  1) Israel economic spectrum is much to the left of the US, like almost any other western democracy. 2) The best indication of a person's vote is religion and ethnicity. Arabs almost always vote for one of the 3 main Arab lists (though Druze are an exception, most of their vote goes for Jewish parties, mainly left wing but a sizeable right wing vote as well); Ultra orthodox and "Kipa sruga" (="religious Zionists", a term I disdain) also have their parties (Ultra orthodox, or "haredim" almost exclusively vote for their parties, religious Zionist not so much anymore); There are "Russian parties" (not so much anymore, the only party currently in the Knesset with a majority Russian electorate is Lieberman's "Israel Beytenu"); There's a clear divide between Sephardim* non religious Jews, usually more traditionalist, conservatives in attitudes and lower socio economic status, voting for the right wing parties (mainly Shas and Likud) and Ashkenazi* non religious Jews, more secular and liberal and upper scale voting for left wing parties.

*Sephardim and Ashkenazim are terms used to describe Jews who came from, or more likely their parents and grandparents came from, Muslim countries (mainly Iran, Iraq, Yemen, Libya, Morocco, Tunisia but also Greece, Turkey and Bulgaria for the most part, these are Sephardim) or Christian European countries (mainly Germany, France, Poland, Lithuania, Hungary, Romania and the former USSR, these are Ashkenazim).

We'll start with the current makeup of the Knesset:
Kadima 21 seats (Left)
Likud 27 seats (Right)
Israel Beytenu 15 seats (R)
Shas 10 seats (R)
Labour 8 seats (L)
HaTnua 7 seats (L)
United Torah Judaism 5 seats (R)
Independence 5 seats (L)
The Jewish Home of Mafdal and National Union 5 seats (R)
Hadash 4 seats (L)
Ra'am Ta'al 4 seats (L)
Meretz 3 seats (L)
Balad 3 seats (L)
Power to Israel 2 seats (R)
Am Shalem 1 seat (R)

These numbers are not the results of the last elections, they are the numbers at dissolution. There are differences, for example Kadima got 28 seats in the elections but since then 7 MK have moved to Livny's new party- HaTnua ("the movement", the most generic term one could pick). All in all, you have 65 seats for the right block and 55 seats for the left block out of a Knesset of 120 seats. In Israel, all 120 seats are elected at the same time in a national proportional system (with a threshold of 2%) with voters voting for parties lists, not specific candidates. The last elections were held in February 10th,2009, the next will be held in January 22nd, almost 4 years later, an achievement by Israeli standards.

After the last elections there was uncertainty who will lead the government as Kadima was the biggest party whilst Likud led the dominant right wing block (the result of a Kadima campaign that squeezed the other Left parties to record lows, Labor with 13 seats and Meretz with 3). Indeed, both parties held victory rallies that night...The law says that the president chooses who is the candidate with the best chances of forming a coalition and gives him the right to do so, this after being advised by every party in the Knesset. As it turned out, every right wing and religious party supported Netanyahu as PM (amounting to 65 MK) whilst no party other then Kadima supported Livny (28 MK) and so President Peres (elected to his office as  a Kadima member) had no choice but to give the right to Netanyahu who indeed formed a coalition with relative ease by March 31st, 2009. The coalition was formed by Netanyahu's Likud (27 seats), Lieberman's Israel Beytenu (15), Barak's Labour (13), as well as the ultra orthodox parties (Shas with 11 and UTJ with 5) and the small religious party of the Jewish Home (3), the incarnation of the classical Mafdal. It was a coalition of 74 MK in theory but 69 in practice as 5 Labour MK (including Peretz and Yechimovich) opposed Labour's entrance and pretty much marched to their own tune. The price was heavy for Netanyahu, Barak was given the ministry of defence whilst Lieberman was given the foreign affairs ministry, 2/3 of the most important ministries (the third being the treasury).

The first big bump was in the foreign affairs department as Netanyahu, after International pressure, went to my own University of Bar Ilan and gave a speech adopting the two state solution in June 2009, everyone knew Netanyahu supported it but it was seen as unnecessary to go this far out (giving several specifics) towards an Arab side unwilling to compromise in any way or form. Later Netanyahu announced a freeze of construction in Judea and Samaria (whilst also freezing eastern Jerusalem without announcing it), something no Israeli PM has ever done, all to bring Mahmud Abbas to the negotiations table. It did not work and after 10 months and a lot of right wing pressure the freeze was abandoned formally (though still construction was slowed down significantly in these areas). The lack of negotiation for more than a year made Labour members openly critical of the government and Barak's standing hit new lows as Labour dropped to 8 seats and less at the polls. In January 2011 Barak, knowing he has no future in the party, left it with 4 other MK (5 MK was the minimum for splitting a party for legal reasons) forming the independence party, a centrist outfit centering around his own leadership, leaving Labour with 8 members and only room to grow, and the government with 66 MK, quite enough as these members were extremely loyal.

In the summer of 2011 the focus of attention moved to economic issues as "social justice" protests broke out. The intent of the protestors was unclear, a mess of middle class citizens wanting lower taxes, protesting high cost of living, lower class citizens wanting more government aide and left wing ideologues going after a socialist/communist flag and "change of priorities" which meant going after the ultra orthodox and the settlers. The protest led to the formation of the Trajtenberg committee searching for ways of easing the lives of people, headed by a known and respected economist. The committee reached some conclusions, some of them adopted by the government. That was enough to quiet most of the protests (together with the end of summer brake and a rather cold winter) and the summer the next year, to the dismay of many in the left, no protests broke out. The protests did have an influence as the government kept on blowing the budget, later hiking taxes, doing the exact opposite of Netanyahu's past known convictions and actions as the minister of the treasury under Sharon. One of the reasons of the early elections is the massive deficit which means a very nasty 2013 budget which is best handled, so Netanyahu thought, after the elections.

The fall and winter of 2011-2012 was centered on leadership elections in all major parties. Labour went first in September as it stood with an interim leader (former MK Micha Harish, an old respected figure) since Barak resigned the party. The elections were held between MK Shelly Yechimovich, former leaders Amram Mitzna and Amir Peretz and MK and former minister (and son of former President) Isaac Hertzog. Yechimovich and Peretz proceeded to second round in which Yechimovitch won. Her win has a strong connection to the protest as she was focused on a social democratic agenda and not on the Israeli Arab conflict which was the main issue for Peretz (though Peretz is very much a socialist just like Yechimovich could not be mistaken for a right winger). Labour shoot up the polls as Yechimovich was a popular MK for years. Next was hard left party Meretz as leader Chaim Oron resigned from leadership (after resigning from the Knesset earlier) due to record low performance in 2009. 2 MK ran, Ilan Gil'on, focusing more on a socialist agenda and Zahava Gal'on running on foreign affairs issues (again, both hard socialists and hard lefties, the difference is stylistic and on emphasis). Gal'on won, taking the party further to the left. Netanyahu also announced leadership elections in the ruling party. His only opponent was perennial candidate Moshe Feiglin, in his fourth run, Netanyahu won handily 77-23. Livny was also forced to announce leadership elections after delaying it for years (in accordance with the party's constitution which gives much power to the party leader over democratic characteristics). Before the 2009 elections Livny barely held off Shaul Mofaz by 400 votes with allegations of fraud. Livny is known as very bad at small groups and "unhuman" in personal affairs, whilst she was busy in international cocktails Mofaz criss crossed the country and won easily 62-38, a huge embarrassment for Livny who left the Knesset several days later.

The first shot of the elections was when the Supreme Court claimed a law, allowing ultra orthodox youngsters to avoid the draft if they learn Torah in Yeshiva's at the time, was unconstitutional. That sent the political arena into a frenzy as an alternate law should have been legislated. After several weeks with no apparent solution Netanyahu decided on early elections in May. That decision should be approved by the Knesset like any other law, after speeches and debate. All day debate ensued and it was clear speaker Rivlin tried to delay the final vote, indeed near midnight, May 7th,  Mofaz and Netanyahu announced the entrance of Kadima to the coalition, in fear of polls showing them with less than 10 seats. That affair was short lived, in July, after no agreement was reached (surprise, surprise) Mofaz left the coalition which lasted 3 more months before deciding on elections in September. The damage has been done however, for both Likud which fell to the same place they were in 2009, less than 30 seats, and for Kadima which fell very close to the threshold with 3-5 seats.

When the elections were supposed to be held in August/September Yair Lapid, son of Tommy Lapid, former chairman of ultra secular Shinuy Party, and a known journalist himself, announced the formation of a new "centrist" secular party, named "Yesh Atid" ("there's a future"). In the months leading to the elections Lapid added members from every corner of the society: mayors, athletes, high ranking police and military personnel and more, none of them a current or former MK. His party is moderate leftist in foreign affairs whilst being capitalistic, attacking Yechimovich in the pursuit of the votes of left wing voters with more conservative fiscal outlook.

The first big story of these elections was the joint list of Likud and Lieberman's Israel Beytenu. The parties were not merged (yet), instead each party elected its own list by their method, a big primary elections in Likud and Lieberman's picks in Israel Beytenu. At first it was expected that the list would be consisted of 2 Likud members for each Israel Beytenu member, that has changed since then to a better deal for Lieberman, leading to a small Likud party in the next Knesset of about 20-22 MK (out of 32-35 MK to the joined list, according to the polls). Lieberman has since been indicted on corruption charges and resigned the FA ministry whilst keeping his job as MK and his place as second in the joined list and leader of the party. In November operation Pillar of Cloud in the south against terrorist organization of Hamas was held, ending in anticlimax of an early ceasefire deal which raised some eyebrows and moved some votes away from Likud to JH.

The story of these elections might be Naftali Bennett and his party, the Jewish Home, Mafdal's descendant. After years of deliberating the issue a decision was made to elect its leaders and candidates through primaries for the first time in its history. Months of preparation ended in November, just before the elections, when Bennett, a relative newcomer and youngster, won handily over long time MK Zvulun Orlev 67-33. The Jewish Home merged with 2/4 of the parties consisting the more religious and right wing National Union (also 2/4 MK of the NU) and shoot up in the polls, garnering half of their prospective votes from secular Jews searching for a party to the right of the Likud as Israel Beytenu was no longer viable after announcing its joint list with Likud. The two remaining MK of NU formed their own party, to the right of JH, called "Otzma LeIsrael" ("strength to Israel") which stands right on the threshold in the polls. Livny announced just before the closing deadline her own party "HaTnua" which gone after left wing votes attacking Yechimovich from the left. Soon joined her, a couple of her loyalists running away from the sinking ship of Kadima and also Yechimovich' foes from Labour: Mitzna and Peretz, both former Labour leaders and to the left of Yechimovich. Both also quite socialists unlike Livny which is more blend in fiscal issues and don't really concern herself with them. Another notable party right on the threshold is "Am Shalem" of MK Amsalem, elected in Shas list 2 consecutive elections but left it after a personal dispute which also led to his transformation, making him a centrist, politically, and flag bearer of liberal (but still orthodox) Judaism, attacking Shas for its religious extremism.  

The polls are as follows:
Likud-Israel Beytenu with 33-35 seats.
Labour with 16-18 seats.
JH with 13-15 seats.
Shas with 10-12 seats.
Yesh Atid with 10-12 seats.
HaTnua with 8-10 seats.
3 Arab parties (nationalist Balad, Islamist Ra'am Ta'al and communist Hadash) with 10-11 seats.
UTJ with 5-6 seats.
Meretz with 4-5 seats.
3 parties on the verge of entering: Kadima, Am Shalem and Otzma LeIsrael.

The expected coalition is Likud Beytenu, JH, UTJ, Shas, Yesh Atid and Kadima (if enters the Knesset). The chance of a secular Likud+Left government was reduced by Yechimovich announcing she would not enter the coalition. Livny didn't announce similar statement but the animosity between herself and Netanyahu is known and she might be too far to the left and could not live with JH and the more rightists in the Likud. What should be noted are last minute movements, polls are forbidden in the last 3 days or so, the last polls will be the ones published this Friday. If anything interesting will be revealed there I will update the diary accordingly.
Exit polls out (using those of 4 TV channels):
Likud Beytenu 31/30 seats
Yesh Atid 18/19 seats
Labour 17 seats
Jewish Home 12/13/14 seats
HaTnua 6/7 seats
Meretz 6/7 seats
Shas 11/12/13 seats
UTJ 6/5 seats
Arabs 8/10/11 seats
Otzma LeIsrael 0/2/3 seats

The final unofficial results are as follows:
Likud Beytenu 31 seats
Yesh Atid 19 seats
Labour 15 seats
JH 12 seats
Shas 11 seats
UTJ 7 seats
HaTnua 6 seats
Meretz 6 seats
Ra'am Ta'al 4 seats
Hadash 4 seats
Balad 3 seats
Kadima 2 seats
That accounts to a 61/59 right wing majority, a very much reduced majority. The turnover between the 18th Knesset and the 19th is huge, 54/120 MK will be new, some of them were MK in the past (Livny, HaNegbi and others) most weren't. Why did this happen? Likud's campaign, as last time was disastrous and the joint list was a mistake as it drove away both Russians who voted YB and Sephardim who voted for Likud. JH received a lot of religious votes who previously voted for Likud as Likud had a very negative campaign against the JH but also against prominent Rabbis who supported JH and generally the religious public. Seculars who wanted to vote for JH didn't want to vote for an extreme party (as Likud suggested it was) but at the same time were not happy with the government and Netanyahu and so moved to Lapid. Labour ran with a socialist ticket and Livny with a clear left wing ticket asking for quick negotiations, both failed miserably. Lapid ran with a generic secular campaign without saying clear statements and won the votes of both right wingers and left wingers who wanted a change in the government.
What kind of coalition would be? one thing we do know is that Netanyahu will be PM and Lapid will be the strongman in the government. To those two (and Lieberman) Labour, HaTnua, JH and Shas would want to join (even though Yechimovich tries to lead Labour to the Opposition but might not even be relevant as her party members are furious) and the Bibi+Lapid duo would have to decide.
Hope you enjoyed my (first) diary!

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Very well done, very interesting, thanks a lot.

There was a lot of talk about Bennett in German media last week, or so.

Besides our own German state elections in Lower Saxonia on Sunday, the Israel elections are the ones I'll closely follow. From what I've read (not entirely sure about it, the German media in toto are very anti-Israel), Bennett seems to have forced Bibi to the right on a couple of things.  

German citizen - Conservative by heart, non native english speaker

Any thoughts on Lower Saxony?
It seems to me (not following closely) that it will probably be a red/green government unless enough minor parties can cross 5% to mess that up...

30, Left leaning indie, MA-7

[ Parent ]
Interesting question, actually
I don't want to spam this marvelous diary too much, but general points would be:

(1) Polls are incredibly close, the last ones I saw declared it a tossup with Red/Green leading by a mere 1%

(2) If the FDP crosses 5%, the CDU-FDP will be likely to continue their governance of the state.

(3) SPD is getting dragged down by it's nominee for chancellor who's stumbling from day to day.

(4) If the SPD/Greens manage to win, they'l solify their majority in the Budesrat (where they're blocking all sort of stuff atm) and the Head of the FDP will have to take his hat.

(5) If the CDU/FDP manage to win, it'll send a strong signal for the general elections later this year. Both CDU and SPD are polling at their extreme ends atm. CDU at it's best, SPD at it's worst.

Back to Israel, sorry.  

German citizen - Conservative by heart, non native english speaker

[ Parent ]
Thank you for your kind words
Likud's strategy, which was heavily criticized by the right, was to go after Bennett and JH to stop the constant leaking of voters instead of going after their counterparts in the left. That meant both attacking Bennett himself and his colleagues in JH and tacking rightwards towards the elections. The left parties also fought amongst themselves more than anything else, so really each block was dealing with itself this elections. Hoping for CDU win, as always, in lower saxonia.

[ Parent ]
It's amazing though
How stable the R vs. L is in all the polls going back forever. The shifts were only within the halves. People do have a solid opinion on security issues.

26, Male, R, NY-10

[ Parent ]
Fascinating diary
I knew all of it, but this is very nicely written.

IMO, you can update it with the primaries in Likud and Labor.
The Labor primaries had no effect electorally even after a few extremists entered the list because they are invisible. The Likud primaries gave the Likud a temporary big bounce which faded when Netanyahu utterly stupidly decided to attack Bennett. He gained back rightist voters after the primary which resulted in many solid rightists on the list but lost them once he attacked someone who they agreed more with.

26, Male, R, NY-10

As you said
Labour primaries didn't really budge the polls though you could say that a better, centrist list would have allowed Yechimovich to move to the centre like she probably wanted as the only leftist politician with a clue of where the voters are. Regarding Likud I think people are exaggerating, Likud's list hasn't changed that much, some leftists were kicked out (Eitan and Meridor) but also some rightists (Nes and Finian). It was a question of constituency service, who showed Likud members he cares about them, gone making speeches across the country instead of trusting the people to do the right choice like Begin done.

[ Parent ]
4 new polls today
In 3/4 the right is getting stronger, in all 4 Meretz is gaining because hard leftists are dropping Livni for some reason.
It's good for the right the more votes Meretz takes from Livni. Rightists want the mainstream leftist parties to have the least possible power.

26, Male, R, NY-10

And apparently
Kadima is passing the threshold in almost every poll. Same with Otzma LeYisrael. Kadima is gaining on the expense of the left and a weak Mofaz with 2-3 seats is good for the right and Bibi. He will run to the government on all 4.
Otzma Leyisrael isn't taking from anyone, unless voters moved from Lapid to Likud and from Likud to JH and from JH to OL.

26, Male, R, NY-10

[ Parent ]
2 reasons for Meretz surging
the first being that hard left voters finally realized that there is no chance of ousting Netanyahu and in this case there is no reason to compromise on a more moderate party. The other reason is that Livny has much weakened after a joint attack by Lapid and Yechimovich, both accusing her of lying to the public in regards to their (all 3) meeting last week in which they've discussed the possibility of having some sort of cooperation, the meeting went nowhere.

[ Parent ]
You are voting for Bennett?

26, Male, R, NY-10

[ Parent ]
It's not been an easy decision for me
after months of "shakla ve'taria" decided I'd vote for JH, in large part because I trust members of Tkuma to make sure Bennett doesn't do any monkey business.

[ Parent ]
Instead of Ben Ari?

26, Male, R, NY-10

[ Parent ]
Instead of Degel (Aguda)

[ Parent ]
I would be in the same undecided place
But at the end of the day, I'd most likely vote for Gimel because as much as I dislike its members, they would listen to daas torah, Bennett and Shaked wouldn't.  

26, Male, R, NY-10

[ Parent ]
Yeah, well I can still change my mind
And like I've said, I put my faith on Tkuma members to make sure the interests of hreidim will not be pushed aside. If they'll fail me, next time I won't do the same mistake (just like last time I supported Netanyahu and Likud). I suppose you would be on the side of Porush and not Gafni? (Aguda and not Degel).
Git Shabbes.

[ Parent ]
Good site to track all the polls

26, Male, R, NY-10

So grateful we don't have so many parties!
I got confused just reading the diary. I can't imagine how it would be in real life!

Just think how many parties I kept out
of the diary to make it more readable, I could have gone on and on about the 4 Arab parties, the difference between the parties forming UTJ, JH and Otzma LeIsrael and more. Really interesting country for political junkies.

[ Parent ]
How on earth
can they govern with coalitions of 3+? That's something I've always asked myself.  

German citizen - Conservative by heart, non native english speaker

[ Parent ]
A good point could be made
that they can't which leads to frequent elections and continued status quo.

[ Parent ]
2 party states work best
At least in my opinion. Three party systems can work if you have an instant runoff.  

[ Parent ]
Definitely work best
Not most democratic.
The Israeli system is pure democracy.  

26, Male, R, NY-10

[ Parent ]
Far from it
a pure system would be based on referenda whilst Israel never had a single one and just lately changed the law to allow referendum in extreme cases. Also there is a threshold of 2%.

[ Parent ]
Well democracy
As in representative democracy.
And a threshold is the only thing preventing every loony tunes with 30000 votes from getting a seat. You would have potheads, communists etc.
Git Shabbes.  

26, Male, R, NY-10

[ Parent ]
Thank you.
You do seem to have made a small error though; Am Shalem was formed by an incumbent MK (which you say yourself near the end of this post) but you don't list them having any seats in the outgoing Knesset. I misunderstanding something?

(-10.00, -3.49), libertarian socialist, "When smashing monuments, save the pedestals. They always come in handy."

-- Stanisław Lem

You are right
He seceded from Shas.

26, Male, R, NY-10

[ Parent ]
Rumors are that
Likud is losing seats in internal polling done by different parties and organizations (it is not allowed to publish polls in the last few days but everyone polls privately).

To which party?

26, Male, R, NY-10

[ Parent ]
In the last elections
There was no movement in the past few days outside of the blocs, but Kadima gained from Labor and Meretz. And yes, it's a stupid law.

YB was bizzarely way overrated in the polls. Will it happen again with JH?

26, Male, R, NY-10

[ Parent ]

26, Male, R, NY-10

[ Parent ]
The exit poll law does make sense
I remember listening to Reshet Bet 4 years ago and the media couldn't hide their glee how Livni won (lol) and weren't trying too hard not to leak it.
The exit polls did overstate Kadima.

26, Male, R, NY-10

[ Parent ]
I guess the votes move to either JH or Shas
but who knows? personally I think it's likelier that JH is overrated than underrated. On the other hand there is evidence that JH is strengthening as everyone attacks them

[ Parent ]
Rumors in these situations
Are usually disinformation.  

26, Male, R, NY-10

[ Parent ]
Generally Reliable Source Tells Me
The Right vs. Left is steady at 67-53 in a poll and Yesh Atid has overtaken Labor.

26, Male, R, NY-10

[ Parent ]
If so that's huge

[ Parent ]
Link to a supposed poll
It might be the same poll. Here it's 64-56, or more accurately, 64-37-19.

26, Male, R, NY-10

[ Parent ]
That confirms the rumors of a weakened Likud

[ Parent ]
With this poll
In hindsight, Netanyahu was a genius for merging with YB. Just imagine the chaos after an election with so many parties with about the same amount of seats.

26, Male, R, NY-10

[ Parent ]
Another unreleased poll
From the least reliable source possible.

26, Male, R, NY-10

[ Parent ]
Well, in 27 hours we shold know more

[ Parent ]
Poll from my reliable source
Likud: 30
HaBayit HaYehudi: 15
Labor: 14
Yesh atid: 14
UTJ: 6
Amsalem; 4
Livni: 7
Shas: 10
Otzma: 3


26, Male, R, NY-10

[ Parent ]
Thank you
that's another poll showing a weak Likud. Amsalem passing and Kadima don't is surprising.

[ Parent ]
Polls have opened and I have voted
By noon 26.7% have voted which suggests high turnout of more than 70% though this kind of math should be taken with a grain of salt.

38.3% as of 2 pm

26, Male, R, NY-10

[ Parent ]
46.6% as of 4 pm
Very similar to 1992 which ended in 77% turnout.

26, Male, R, NY-10

[ Parent ]
It's a legal holiday
Which really helps. People are involved and there are enough parties that almost everyone has for whom to vote.

26, Male, R, NY-10

[ Parent ]
And yet a lot of people don't

[ Parent ]
77% would be really high for a modern democracy
And remember, many Arabs don't vote and some Charedi extremists too.

26, Male, R, NY-10

[ Parent ]
77% would
but the last 2 elections we had 65%, 64%, which is not very high when you take into account the factors you've mentioned and others.

[ Parent ]
Kikar reports
That BB has already 70% turnout. There is high turnout all over.

26, Male, R, NY-10

[ Parent ]
Hopefully we'll see BB mayor in the Knesset as well

[ Parent ]
Hard to believe that they'll reach 7
6 is very plausible. Asher will in case be for the second half of the term.

26, Male, R, NY-10

[ Parent ]
Who did you vote for in the end?

26, Male, R, NY-10

[ Parent ]
Be"t but I pray for Gime"l's success.
I do hope thay won't make me regret this.

[ Parent ]
In 1981 and 1984
There were similar numbers at this point too and it hit 79% turnout.

26, Male, R, NY-10

[ Parent ]
Rumors persisting
Likud drop and Lapid rise.

26, Male, R, NY-10

As of 6 pm (hour ago)
Turnout at 55.5%.

26, Male, R, NY-10

Turnout down in Likud-Israel Beytenu strongholds
Haaretz live blog:

5:33 P.M.  Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu tells Haaretz  that voter turnout in Likud strongholds in Israel are low, highlighting the growing fear within his party that it's heading for collapse. As the evening wears on, Netanyahu is continuing his efforts to awaken Likud voters across the country.

5.27 P.M. Likud is concerned with low turnout at the party's traditional bastions. "We're lucky if we get 31 seats," one party official said.


Education Minister Sa'ar also troubled:

"It is definitely troubling that voter turnout rates are high in areas where left-wingers are the majority, as of right now we are working to raise the voter turnout among Likud and Yisrael Beiteinu voters."

(-10.00, -3.49), libertarian socialist, "When smashing monuments, save the pedestals. They always come in handy."

-- Stanisław Lem

Rule number 1
Never ever believe election day turnout anecdotes anywhere.
Even if one out of 20 are true.

This can just be them trying to cause rightists to vote for fear of high leftist turnout. Happens all the time.

26, Male, R, NY-10

[ Parent ]
Turnout low in Arab towns
Hard numbers

26, Male, R, NY-10

Thank you for the link
we don't know if the rumors are correct but we do know that everyone leads to the same conclusion, a weak Likud and a strong left wing bloc, especially Lapid.

[ Parent ]
Hard to know if this is spin

In any case, the exit polls only show results until 8 pm which was already. In less than 2 hours, we'll see the exit polls.

26, Male, R, NY-10

[ Parent ]
Some rumors say
That Lapid is at 20+

26, Male, R, NY-10

Supposed unconfirmed leaks
[ Parent ]
Well.. that's bad for Bibi and Bennett

[ Parent ]
Way to go with this numbers.

[ Parent ]
And the turnout has dropped, just 63.7% by 20:00
viewing past patterns should mean 68-70% by 22:00.

More people voted early it seems

26, Male, R, NY-10

[ Parent ]
Thanks for your thoughts

26, Male, R, NY-10

I'd say one of the best things in these elections
is the almost complete tie between the right/religious bloc and the left/secular block which helps us examine voting patterns. For example I've checked by now the two biggest cities, in Tel Aviv the left got 68% and in Jerusalem the right got 74%. Tel Aviv drift leftwards continues as Jerusalem drifts rightwards (last elections TA was at +17Left and Jerusalem +22Right).
I also like to see how ultra orthodox cities grow in size and influence, take Modi'in Ilit for example, in 1999 their vote counted for 0.11% of the national vote, by 2006 it was 0.33%, in 2009 0.40% and this week 0.49%. 77% of voters in Modi'in Ilit voted for UTJ, 18% for Shas.

UTJ winning Jerusalem was huge

26, Male, R, NY-10

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