Come Sunday, Netanyahu will likely receive a two-week extension to form a government, and he seems ready to give up hopes of including the Haredim. But what if, against all odds, another election is necessary this summer?
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is in no mood to enjoy Purim. He's halfway through his allotted time to build a coalition, but struggling to break the alliance between new boys on the block, Yair Lapid and Naftali Bennett.
At a joint press conference Livni and Netanyahu stressed that their mutual goals had trumped their disagreements and paved the way for the agreement.
Analysis First Coalition Deal As Long as Netanyahu Is PM, Livni Will Have to Deal With the Palestinians His Way
Tzipi Livni, like other politicians that came before her, will have to yield to coalition politics in the pursuit of her pet cause - reaching an agreement with the Palestinians.
At this stage, no one, including Netanyahu himself, knows what his government will look like on March 15.
The nearly two weeks of coalition talks that have passed have been little more than foreplay. But not to worry: Netanyahu will never entrust the task to someone else.
Benjamin Netanyahu is trying, so far without success, to find a coalition recipe that will allow him to mix most of the Knesset ingredients into a stew fit for human consumption.
Analysis Two Weeks After Election, What Israel's 33rd Government Will Look Like Remains Anyone's Guess
As far as Netanyahu is concerned, the hand that caressed him on the day of the opening of Israel's 19th Knesset will stab him in the back tomorrow.
Likud ministers found their leader in a bad mood last week, and were told that from now on all interviews must be authorized; Can Netanyahu and Lapid agree on anything at all?
Peres to Open Preliminary Coalition Consultations Lapid and Bennett Coordinating Moves to Outflank ultra-Orthodox in Next Coalition
The link between Lapid and Bennett sends a clear signal to Netanyahu that both are serious about confronting the Haredi conscription issue.