(June 9, 2020 / JNS) Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s Likud Party would win a clear majority if elections were held today, a Channel 12 poll released on Monday evening indicates.
According to the poll, conducted by the Midgam Institute’s Meno Geva, Likud would garner 40 seats—up from the 36 that it currently holds—bringing the right-wing-religious bloc to 64 out of 120 Knesset seats.
The second largest party would be the Joint Arab List, maintaining its strength at 15 seats. The Yesh Atid-Telem Party, led by Opposition leader Yair Lapid, would win 14 seats, and the Blue and White Party, headed by Defense Minister and Vice Prime Minister Benny Gantz would win 12. The two latter parties ran together in the last elections and won 33 seats in March.
Other results of the poll put Shas and Yisrael Beiteinu at 9 seats, Yamina at 8, United Torah Judaism at 7 and Meretz at 6—with Labor, Gesher, Derech Eretz and the Jewish Home parties failing to cross the electoral thresshold.
Israel faced an unprecedented three Knesset elections in the course of 15 months, when neither the left-wing bloc nor right-wing bloc had a sufficient majority to form a government. After weeks of negotiations, following the third round of elections on March 2, Netanyahu and Gantz signed a coalition agreement, putting an end to the deadlock.
As part of the agreement, Netanyahu is serving as prime minister for the first 18 months of the government’s term, with Gantz serving as vice prime minister and minister of defense. On Nov. 17, 2021, Gantz is scheduled to become prime minister with Netanyahu serving as vice prime minister.
The new poll, referred to by Channel 12 as “dramatic,” suggests that Likud might not need Blue and White to form a coalition in the event that the current government does not last, and the public is sent back to the ballot box for another round of elections.
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