Econostrum | Economic News in the Mediterranean



Act 4 of the Israeli legislative elections ends up with the same scenario as the first three

Only 67.2% of voters went to the polls (photo: Knesset)
Only 67.2% of voters went to the polls (photo: Knesset)
ISRAEL. Although the results are not yet final - they will not be announced by the Electoral Commission until Friday, March 26, 2021 - the ballot boxes of the legislative elections of Tuesday, March 23, 2021 in Israel have still not managed to deliver a clear winner. The right (Likud pro Benyamin Netanyahu) and the other bloc (centrists and the left opposed to the former, which has dominated local politics for nearly twenty years) are still neck and neck. The 6.5 million potential voters have not yet been able to decide between them. Only 67.2% of them went to the polls, a drop of 4.3 points compared to the last poll in March 2020.

History has been repeating itself over the past two years. In four parliamentary elections already, no party has been able to collect the sixty-one votes needed to obtain a majority in the Knesset. Once again, negotiations are required to form a coalition, which is bound to be very fragile. And yet it will have to form a government. It is up to the President of the Republic, Reuven Rivlin, to ask the deputies to choose a Prime Minister capable of carrying out this delicate task.


Israel is back to where it started

Benyamin Netanyahu (currently on trial for corruption), who would get between 31 and 33 of the 120 seats in Parliament, seems best placed to do so. On condition that Naftali Bennett, leader of the radical right (Yamina), joins him with his seven seats, as well as the religious groups. The centrists of Yesh Atid ("there is a future") and their president Yair Lapid would only get 16 to 18 seats. The other movements do not reach ten seats. A new development is that the Jewish supremacists of Otzma Yehudit are entering the Knesset.

Israel is back where it started. And the specter of the need for a fifth legislature looms.

In the last election in March 2020, Benyamin Netanyahu came out on top. But President Reuven Rivlin entrusted his opponent Benny Gantz (Kakhol Lavan - Blue White - center) with the task of forming a government. He did not succeed. Neither did the outgoing Prime Minister. However, an agreement between the two men allowed the situation to be unblocked and avoided a power vacuum in the middle of the coronavirus epidemic. According to this text, the post of Prime Minister became rotating. The outgoing Prime Minister, Benyamin Netanyahu, had begun his mandate and was to step down in eighteen months in favour of his opponent. But the agreement included a prerequisite: agreeing on a budget covering the years 2020 and 2021.

This was not the case, leading to a dissolution of the Knesset in late December 2020 and a fourth legislative election.


Wednesday, March 24th 2021

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