Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Israeli Elections Update

The actual results are coming through now, and the picture is getting a bit clearer.

About 45% of the actual votes have been counted, and it's close. Kadima is slightly ahead of Likud by less than 1%,and so both Livni and Netanyahu have proclaimed 'victory' an dare busily working on settin gup a coalition since neither has enough seats on their own to govern. Kadima is projected to win29-30 seats,while Likud looks to win 27-28. Israel Beiteinu has apparently won 14-15 seats, with Labor at 13.

Remember however...the magic number is 61 to form a majority government in the Knesset, and there Tzipi Livni's chances look slim.

Avigdor Lieberman of Israel Beiteinu has pretty much signified that he will not be part of a Kadima/Labor Left coalition, saying Yisrael Beiteinu's list of priorities is clear, "and it's first objective is the defeat of Hamas. We will not have direct or indirect negotiations with them nor a ceasefire.

"It doesn't matter which government will be formed. If we will be in this government, the defeat of Hamas will be the foremost objective."

Given that Livni's potential coalition partner Labor has already said that they won't serve in a government that includes Lieberman, it's difficult to see how she gets to 61 seats, even with the Arab parties.

Livni already had one shot at forming a government after Olmert resigned, and failed. And the balance between the Right and Left in the Knesset was much more favorable to her then. Th eIsraeli electorate has definitely moved to the Right.

More as it happens...


Ymarsakar said...

Another thing about parliaments is that they suck in war. They can't sustain a majority? Oh shat, the government just collapsed.

An interesting way to run a war.

Ymarsakar said...

Th eIsraeli electorate has definitely moved to the Right.

The Israelis on the borders. The Israelis in the urban centers? They're still sipping whatever they drink and having regular social parties.

They ain't worried. Let the border lands die.

Freedom Fighter said...

Actually, the Israelis tend to pull together when the shooting starts. Being surrounded by 100 million genocidal maniacs with your backs to the sea has a way of concentrating one's attention on the important things.

Olmert was an anomoly in this regard.

The division you speak of is not so much between the cities and the 'border lands'( an interesting concept in such a small country) but between left leaning Israelis in the universities,the Histradut, elites in Tel Aviv and some elements of the working poor who depend on gimmees and the Israelis in the Yesha ( You'd call it the West Bank) the religious zionists, a big chunk of the Middle classes, and the Israelis in places like Ashdon , Ashkelon, the Golan,the Galilee and the Negev.

One could simplify it in a way by calling it a conflict between Tel Aviv and Jerusalem, only we're talking more about attitude than the actual populations as a whole.

Shimon Peres made reference to this when he famously said that Israel was a conflict between the Jews ( the religious and cultural element) and the Israelis,( the secular Labor Zionist element) and the Jews won.