(January 3, 2019 / Israel Hayom) The split in the national-religious camp is likely to chips away at the right-wing’s strength come the April 9 election, a new poll commissioned by Israel Hayom and conducted by the Maagar Mochot polling institute found on Wednesday.
The results predicted that, were the election be held now, Education Minister Naftali Bennett and Justice Minister Ayelet Shaked’s New Right Party would win eight Knesset seats, while Jewish Home, from which they split, would win only four seats, barely scraping by the 3.25 percent electoral threshold.
The poll gave Likud 28 seats—far ahead of any of the other parties, but still three sits down from the 31 seats projected last week.
The poll further predicted that former Israel Defense Forces’ Chief of Staff Benny Gantz’s Israel Resilience Party would win 13 seats, as would Yesh Atid. The Joint Arab List is projected to win nine seats, followed by Labor, with seven; Kulanu, Meretz and United Torah Judaism, each with six; Gesher, five; and Yisrael Beytenu and Hatnuah, each with four seats.
Shas, the Sephardi ultra-Orthodox Party, fell to only three seats. This is below the electoral threshold, which means that the party would find itself out of parliament for the first time since its inception in 1984.
If Shas fails to be elected to the Knesset, it would deal a massive blow to the right-wing as a whole, as its parties would win only 56 seats, rendering Netanyahu unable to form a coalition.
This would also increase the left-wing’s chances of creating a successful opposition bloc that would wrest power away from the right-wing.
Also on Wednesday, Jewish Home Knesset member Moti Yogev leveled harsh criticism at Bennett and Shaked saying the two “defrauded” the party’s supporters.
Yogev said he would vie for Jewish Home’s leadership.