Election Poll: Netanyahu Allies, Opponents Fail to Gain Clear Majority; Small Parties May Tilt the Scales

The United Arab List is expected to have enough votes to put it above the electoral threshold, while Meretz is projected to stay out of the Knesset

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Haaretz
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Billboards with a picture of Netanyahu and his political rivals, Gideon Saar, Naftali Bennett and Yair Lapid in Jerusalem, today.
Billboards with a picture of Netanyahu and his political rivals, Gideon Saar, Naftali Bennett and Yair Lapid in Jerusalem, today. Credit: AHMAD GHARABLI / AFP

An election poll published on Thursday by Kan public broadcaster showed no clear path for a majority for either the bloc of parties backing Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu or those calling to replace him, while several parties are teetering on the brink to the 3.25-percent electoral threshold.

Netanyahu’s Likud remains the biggest party, according to the poll, with 29 out of 120 Knesset seats. Together with ultra-Orthodox parties Shas and United Torah Judaism – each expected to win seven seats in Israel’s March 23 election, and far-right Religious Zionism’s four projected seats – the pro-Netanyahu bloc would have 47 seats. 

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Yair Lapid’s Yesh Atid party maintains its position as the biggest anti-Netanyahu party, with 20 seats in the Kan poll.

Together with Gideon Sa’ar’s New Hope, projected 12 seats, the Arab-majority Joint List’s eight, Yisrael Beiteinu’s seven, Labor’s six and Kahol Lavan’s five, the bloc of parties who declared they wouldn’t join Netanyahu after the election stands at 58 seats – still shy of a 61-seat majority.

Two parties that have kept their intentions vague as to whether they would be willing to back Netanyahu for prime minister, Naftali Bennett’s Yamina and the United Arab List, are projected 15 seats together, according to the poll.

While the United Arab List is projected to have just enough votes to put it above the electoral threshold, left-wing Meretz is projected once more not to pass it and stay out of the next Knesset.

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