Tuesday, March 17, 2015


For those interested in the Israel elections the final estimated results are according to this 4:15 pm report. Remember that the Israeli one house Parliament,  the Knesset, is composed of 120 seats. Since a majority needed is 61 seats and the most either major party received was possibly 28; 33 seats from the other 7 parties will be needed to form a government. It is possible but not likely that a coalition without both Likud and the Zionist Union can be formed but most likely one of those two will put together a new government. The Arab-Israeli Joint List party has said that it will not  participate in any coalition

TEL AVIV (JTA) — Exit polls in Israel showed Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s Likud Party neck and neck at the top with the center-left Zionist Union led by Isaac Herzog.

The two parties had 27 seats each, according to the polls by the Channel 1 and Channel 10 television stations. Channel 2 had Likud with 28 and Zionist Union with 27.

The polls showed the Arab-Israeli Joint List finishing third with 13 seats, according to Channels 2 and 10, and the centrist Yesh Atid, led by Yair Lapid and currently the Knesset’s largest party, coming in fourth. The newly founded Kulanu, led by former Likud minister Moshe Kachlon, placed fifth.

According to the Channel 1 and Channel 10 polls, the right-wing haredi Orthodox bloc will hold 54 seats, with the center-left Arab bloc at 56 seats. Channel 2 has them at 54 and 57, respectively.

President Reuven Rivlin responded to the results by calling for a unity government.

Jewish Home, the pro-settler, religious Zionist party led by Naftali Bennett, placed sixth with nine seats, according to Channel 1, down from the 12 it holds in the current Knesset.

The haredi Orthodox Shas party was seventh with seven seats followed by United Torah Judaism with six seats, though Channel 10 had them tied at seven apiece. In a tie for ninth were the left-wing Meretz and right-wing Yisrael Beiteinu with five seats each, according to all the polls. The far-right Yachad did not win enough votes to enter Knesset.

The next Knesset will have 10 parties, two fewer than the departing parliament.

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