The math speaks for itself. 61 seats in the Knesset are needed to hold a majority and form a government. Prime Minister Netanyahu has failed for the third time to succeed in free elections. He did go from a 33-32 seat deficit to Benny Gantz to a 36-33 seat lead in the most recent poll. However, this is not even close to forming a government.
The Labor-Meretz Party alliance went from 11 to 7 seats in the same time frame, so the Left in Israel also lost. Lieberman and his movement on the right also saw reduced seats. There are no winners in the election process in Israel, and the Israeli people are the biggest losers in not having a legitimate ruling government.
Benny Gantz offered little during the campaign when it comes to ideas to help the population. He spent much of his time criticizing Netanyahu,. Netanyahu primarily went after Gantz and the Judiciary that has indicted him.
That is why the Israeli people are the biggest losers. Who is out there making their priority the issues that directly affect the Israeli people and not the narrow interests of political candidates?
Another factor in this election is the 15 member Arab party in the Knesset, which to this point, has held back its support of Gantz. They have stated they will vote as a unified block which could be a significant factor in the formation of a government. It is likely that those 15 votes will go to Gantz when the time comes and that puts him closer to the 61-vote hurdle.
In addition, we may see Israeli Foreign Minister Israel Katz joining Benny Gantz to build a joint ruling coalition. They have known each other for many years having gone to the same high school and growing up in the same community.
With Netanyahu weakened by the indictment against him, this combination of factors may realistically unseat the present Prime Minister.
The Israeli electorate will need to decide whether the tough policies of the present government would be compromised by new leadership, and if so, what would the consequences be for the safety and security of Israeli citizens?
Hamas and Hezbollah have continued to support the destruction of the state of Israel, as has Iran, and the question the Israeli electorate faces is — how important is the survival issue for Israel and who is best-suited to lead and protect the nation from harm?
The world will keep an eye on this unfolding and continuing election process to get the answer to that question.
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