Blue and White head Benny Gantz called Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and congratulated him on his election victory on Friday."I spoke with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, after the counting of the votes was concluded and the real results came in, and I congratulated him on his success in the elections. We will continue to serve the citizens of Israel. I wish him and the entire Jewish people a happy holiday," Gantz tweeted on Friday morning.Netanyahu replied, "Thank you, I congratulate you on a happy holiday, we will bring Israel back to peace, everyone in his job. Shabbat Shalom," according to KAN radio.Central Elections Committee chairman Judge Hanan Melcer announced late Thursday night that Likud earned 36 seats and Blue and White 35, confirming Likud's win in the 2019 elections. Shas received 8 and UTJ 7, followed by Labor and Hadash-Ta’al tied with 6 each. Yisrael Beytenu and the Union of Right-Wing Parties each got five seats, and Meretz, Kulanu and UAL-Balad each have four.One seat shifted to Likud and away from UTJ compared to the results as of Wednesday night.The New Right under Naftali Bennett and Ayelet Shaked did not make it into the Knesset according to final results.President Reuven Rivlin will begin doing a round of consultations on Monday with all factions chosen for the Knesset, all of which will be broadcast live.
Rivlin will move from large to small factions that were elected for the Knesset in coordination with the chairman of the Central Elections Committee, Judge Hanan Melzer.As is customary, Rivlin will hear the parties' recommendations and at the end will announce the member of the Knesset to whom he has entrusted the task of forming a government. Once this has been done, that person has 28 days to form a new government.Lahav Harkov and Tamar Beeri contributed to this report.