Israel Elections

Israel Elections - The latest news from the Israeli election campaigns.The competing members of the Knesset, candidates, analysis and comentaries

Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu at the weekly cabinet meeting on June 28, 2020.
Netanyahu losing ground, as Bennett and Lapid rise in the polls

Yamina continued to rise in the polls, receiving 16 seats in the N13 poll and 15 in the N12 poll, more than twice their current amount (6).

An Israeli flag is seen on the first of Israel's El Al Airlines order of 16 Boeing 787-9 Dreamliners
The Travel Advisor: A lifeline to keep El Al going

El Al has been given a lifeline; both the government and workers are giving them a cash infusion. Is United’s management so far superior to those at El AL

Behind you, Bibi!

The new government’s opposition seems hapless, but a visionary leader can turn its diverse elements into a viable political alternative

Blue and White leader Benny Gantz at the swearing in of the Knesset
Where is Gantz’s alternate prime minister residence?

With the country still reeling from the economic impact of the coronavirus, Gantz does not want the government to purchase or lease another home.

Gantz to set up vice PM office in addition to Defense Ministry

Office to cost Israeli taxpayers millions, to be led by Gantz's top aide from army days, Hod Betzer.

A coalition or a fourth election?

Israel’s Supreme Court is asked to rule on the Likud-Blue and White deal

An empty Knesset Plenum
TIMELINE: What to expect after Knesset is tasked to form a gov't

Here's what to expect in the coming weeks and months as the Knesset works to form a government.

Joint List condemns Gantz's actions, says he has no 'political backbone'

The Blue and White Party broke up on Thursday after Gantz decided to enter Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's government.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and his wife Sara vote at a Jerusalem polling station on March 2
Third election leaves an ominous impasse

Both Likud and Blue and White claim victory after Israel’s third election in a year.

Emtanis Shihadeh of UAL-Balad
Why did Balad change its mind about Benny Gantz? – analysis

Balad: We took into account accomplishments obtained during negotiations with Blue and White

An empty Knesset Plenum
The 23rd Knesset, the new and the old

The incoming Knesset is not very different from the outgoing, as 112 MKs will continue to serve.

A woman votes at a Jerusalem polling station on March 2
Healing our ailing Knesset

Rather than serve as an example of tolerant inclusive dialogue, the Knesset has become a fountain of toxic verbal violence.

Blue and White leader Benny Gantz and MK Yair Lapid
Yair Lapid: Arabs needed only once for minority government

New Likud ad warns that Gantz's potential partners do not recognize the state.

CEC endorses final election results, some Likudniks abstain

Representatives of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's Likud were among six abstentions in the vote after protesting that there were not more recounts held nationwide.

Likud starts preparing for fourth election

Likud officials said Tuesday that the most likely scenario was that "political instability would continue."

President Reuven Rivlin voting for the 23rd Knesset on Monday
Reuven Rivlin to receive final election results Tuesday

Rivlin will begin his consultations with representatives of the eight Knesset factions on Sunday. The deadline for him to appoint a Knesset member to form a government is next Tuesday, March 17.

Yisrael Beytenu leader Avigdor Liberman
Liberman’s long shot, a Netanyahu ouster and a centrist secular government

From his seven mandate perch, can Liberman succeed in gunning for a centrist government made up of Blue and White and the Likud?

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu gestures as he speaks to supporters following the announce
Likud demands recount after final results published

Netanyahu’s bloc stays at 58 seats.

In Israel's third elections, nobody won and everybody lost

Middle Israel: It’s good for a candidate to be handsome, tall and charming, but at some point people want to hear you articulate ideas and share insights

Israel goes to the polls, March 2, 2020.
Netanyahu's bloc to stay at 58 seats

An announcement of final yet unofficial results of Monday's election will be made on Thursday evening, the Central Elections Committee announced on Wednesday.

Voters quarantined for coronavirus favor Blue and White - initial results

The Center-Left got a clear majority of votes with Blue and white getting more than twice as many votes as Likud and Labor-Gesher-Meretz received twice as many votes as Yamina.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu gestures after speaking to supporters following the announ
Netanyahu: Gantz trying to steal the election

Blue and White begins effort to oust Netanyahu.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Defense Minister Naftali Bennett tour Mount Avital in the Gola
Why did so many religious-Zionist voters choose Bibi not Bennett?

Yamina gained seven seats in last September's election, but just six in Monday's ballot.

Gantz's shortcomings fails to defeat Likud, Netanyahu’s flair superior

Gantz’s lack of charisma and unconvincing message, along with Netanyahu’s campaigning talents and effort to undermine trust in law enforcement agencies caused the party's defeat.

Rivlin, Netanyahu set to clash over mandate to form government

"The country had its say," a Likud spokesman said. "The people want a nationalist government under Netanyahu."

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu gestures after speaking to supporters following the announ
As the election results come in, what did the people say? – analysis

The first message the voters is that they don't care if Netanyahu will begin standing trial in two weeks on charges of bribery, fraud and breach of trust.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu looks on as he delivers a statement during his visit at th
Netanyahu’s victory is an indictment of his indictment - Analysis

The silver lining for Netanyahu of not having an immunity request on the Knesset’s docket was that long debates on his status would not be at the top of the news in the weeks before an election.

Meet the potential defectors Netanyahu wants on the Right

Who might Likud try to recruit? What would potential defectors seek, and what would Likud be willing to give them?

Leader of Joint List party, Ayman Odeh casts his ballot together with his sons at a polling station
Did election racism transform Israeli Arabs into a political powerhouse?

Arabs that had supported Jewish parties in the past came to understand that they needed to vote instead for the Arab parties to receive civil rights and equality.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu
Netanyahu win won't significantly delay trial, if it will delay it at all

Analysis: There is a strong chance that the court will deny any postponement, and if it grant one, it will not be significant.

U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo delivers remarks during the AIPAC convention at the Washington C
State Department will help US businesses threatened by UNHRC blacklist

Pompeo announced that the State Department released official guidance on the subject only hours before his address.

PRESIDENT REUVEN RIVLIN gestures to Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu at the President’s Residence o
Rivlin prepares to begin consultations on forming government

The final results of the elections should be received on Tuesday, March 10. Rivlin will then have seven days in order to carry out consultations with Knesset members and make a decision.

Yisrael Beytenu chairman Avigdor Liberman and his wife Ella cast their vote in Nokdim
Liberman says 'no fourth election,' remains kingmaker by slim margin

For two elections running, neither Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu nor Blue and White Party head Benny Gantz were able to form a government without the Yisrael Beytenu leader.

THE KNESSET – lawmakers have different ways of expressing their frustration over the coalition crisi
Say hello to the 23rd Knesset!

Here are the new members of Knesset according to the Central Elections Committee's most recent results!

Benjamin Netanyahu defeats Gantz, but is still short a majority

The final voter turnout was 71% - up from 69.8% in the previous election.

Election officials refuse to count 'coronavirus votes'

Quarantined voters complained of long waiting times and confusing procedures

Netanyahu calls win biggest victory of his life

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu declared Monday's election "the biggest win of my life" in his victory speech at Expo Tel Aviv that started at 2:20am Tuesday.

Benny Gantz, leader of Blue and White party, attends an election campaign event, in Kfar Ahim, Israe
Gantz does not concede despite exit polls

Gantz called on the activists to wait for the results before deciding the outcome of the race.

Benny Gantz, leader of Blue and White party, speaks during an election campaign rally in Ramat Gan,
Benny Gantz: I will continue to fight for our voters, activists

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu thanked voters on Monday night after exit poll results showed a win for the Likud Party.

A supporter reacts as results of the exit polls are shown at Benny Gantz's Blue and White party head
Gloom and despair at Blue and White event following election failure

There were no cheering crowds at the party’s gathering in the Hangar 11 events hall of the Tel Aviv port district, and little hope.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu looks on as he delivers a statement during his visit at th
Time to go from promises to compromises - analysis

Strangely enough, the problem in Israel over the past year has not been that politicians have lied. It has been that they have been telling the truth.

Defense Minister Naftali Bennett and Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. Did Bennett teach Netanyahu
Naftali Bennett: Yamina will stay united

Bennett, Shaked, Smotrich and Peretz spend Election Day meeting voters and supporters all over Israel

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu
King Bibi Netanyahu, the magician – analysis

One conclusion from these elections: Tibi scares Israelis more than Erdogan.

Supporters sense victory at Likud headquarters

"Bibi, Bibi, king of Israel," Netanyahu supporters chanted as they prepared for a night of anticipated celebration.

Joint List's Heba Yazbak: Joint list is against racism

The Joint List is my voice and your voice together against the incitement in favor of national, civil and sectoral equality

Labor-Gesher-Meretz set to try to bolster Gantz’s hand

Each of the three called on Blue and White to avoid attacking their party and to avoid cannibalizing them for more votes.

The Kochavi family, under quarantine until Thursday, goes to vote at a coronavirus voting booth
Over 70% of 'coronavirus voters' cast their ballots in special stations

“The coronavirus is under control and the Health Ministry is the only one authorized to update the country on the issue."

People vote in Jerusalem on election day, March 2, 2020.
Multiple parties from left to right accused of voter fraud

Shas Party was fined for handling out amulets that it claimed would protect voters from the coronavirus.

People vote in Jerusalem on election day, March 2, 2020.
Third time's charm? Israelis take to voting booths to avoid fourth elex

Apparently, neither coronavirus nor 'election fatigue' can stop Israelis from participating in the democratic process, as Israelis turned out in droves to vote on Monday morning.

Illustration of voting notes in the Israeli general elections on March 02, 2020
Elections 2020: 65.5% of Israelis vote, highest since 1999

The voter turnout at 8 p.m. was 65.5%, a 1.8% increase from the September elections and the highest turnout rate at this hour since the 1999 elections.

Interior Minister Arye Deri at a Shas campaign rally
Haredi parties deploy rabbis, coronavirus amulets to boost voter turnout

As the day progressed, Shas leader Arye Deri, UTJ leader and Health Minister Ya'acov Litzman and senior UTJ MK Moshe Gafni all started hitting the panic button.

Election Day shopping up by over 10% compared to September elections

Between 1 p.m. and 2 p.m., over 7,000 purchases were made per minute, with over 450,000 transactions amounting to NIS 110 million.

People vote in Jerusalem on election day, March 2, 2020.
Pollsters say exit polls 'surprising' and 'unexpected'

“We thought people were apathetic, that people wouldn’t come out to vote,” Fuchs said, explaining that the election fatigue that pollsters and analysts were expecting was blown out of proportion.

Shas fined for giving out charms to protect from coronavirus

The amulets consist of a small card bearing various sentences from Jewish scripture and liturgy with a picture of Rabbi Ovadia Yosef and states 'Protection against plague: Corona - and all evils'

Joint List urges Arabs not to boycott elections, aims to win 16 seats

Joint List supporters said they were making a big effort to persuade Arab women and youth to participate in the election, noting that many of them had boycotted the last two elections.

Itamar Ben Gvir, head of the Otzma Yehudit (Jewish Strength) party holds a press conference in Jerus
Fake letters distributed claiming Otzma Yehudit dropped from elections

"Make an ideological vote - to the only party on the Right who is not trying to con its voters," Otzma Yehudit stated.

Yamina party chairwoman Ayelet Shaked casts her vote at a voting station in Tel Aviv, during the Kne
Ayelet Shaked votes, prays for the end of the political stalemate

"I hope it will be a successful day in which we will be able to end the political stalemate," Shaked said outside the polling station.

Google Doodle featuring the Israeli elections
New Google doodle in honor of Israel's third election

This is not the first time Google has put out a doodle for Israel's elections, with the search engine having put up a similar but visually different doodle for the September 17 and April 9 elections.

Blue and White leader Benny Gantz and his wife vote on Monday
Benny Gantz: I hope that today marks the start of a healing process

"Today is a holiday for Israeli democracy. I call on everyone to go and vote. Don’t get drawn in by the lies or by the violence."

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and his wife Sara voting for the 23rd Knesset on Monday
Netanyahu at the voting booth: Go vote, don't fear coronavirus

“The ability to securely and confidently go to the polls is an important democratic right that we should be proud of," Netanyahu stressed.

President Reuven Rivlin voting for the 23rd Knesset on Monday
Reuven Rivlin on election day, 'I feel a sense of deep shame'

"I am asking of you to go vote. Every vote is the right one. Every vote is your voice. Go out and make it heard"

Former MK Stav Shaffir votes on Monday
Shaffir sends her backers bittersweet message

"After I devoted all my efforts to unite the camp, bring about its victory in the election and safeguard our democracy, I was forced to pay a price," Shaffir wrote.

Israel Health Minister's deputy, Yaakov Ltzman, casts his ballot at a voting station in Jerusalem, d
Health Minister Litzman: Go out and vote without fear of the coronavirus

Be careful of 'fake news' today. Only the Ministry of Health is responsible for making announcements to the public on the coronavirus.

Amir Peretz: The moment has come, it's time to vote for your truth

"Fight for your truth, the truths of your children, the truths of your parents, the truth of your health, the truths of your education."

Shas party chairman and Interior Affairs Minister, Aryeh Deri, casts his ballot at a voting station
Shas leader Aryeh Deri prays over Rabbi Ovadia's grave for elections

"God willing there will we be a decision tonight, that there will be a majority of 61, that we will be able to establish a government to serve the people of Israel."

Electoral commission member from Likud indicted for falsifying results

Before the last election, Netanyahu's Facebook page sent messages calling on voters to prevent a government with the Joint List, saying that Arabs "want to destroy us all – women, children and men."

Will annexation be the key to a Netanyahu victory? – analysis

This time around, Netanyahu has hyper focused on the extreme, centrist and soft right-wing voters, by going into overdrive on sovereignty and settlement building.

Supporters of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu protest outside Likud Party headquarters in
Will the fighting end after the elections? - analysis

Like the two previous elections, Netanyahu has made himself once again the focus of this election. It’s all about him.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu looks on as he delivers a statement during his visit at th
Could voter data manipulation return Netanyahu to power?

The prime minister's sophisticated use of big data was unimaginable a decade ago, but may well push the right wing bloc over the 61-seat line required to win the election.

Israel's enemies are not waiting until a prime minister is chosen

The IDF has no budget for its Momentum multi-year plan. Get it together Israel.

Benny Gantz, leader of Blue and White party, attends an election campaign event, in Kfar Ahim, Israe
Netanyahu caught in lie about taping Gantz adviser

“You are a man with no limits or red lines who uses Mafia tactics,” Blue and White said.

Speaking via satellite feed from Israel, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu addresses AIPAC i
AIPAC attendees weigh in on Israel's elections

After a year with no government in Israel, AIPAC attendees hope this election can resolve the deadlock.

Benny Gantz, head of Blue and White party, greets a child after giving a statement to the media in R
Israel elections: Politicians spew hatred, but people want peace and love

That the vitriol of this campaign has not poisoned everyday interactions between people on the street speaks well of the country – proof, yet again, that the people are better than the politicians.

Defense Minister Naftali Bennett at the Defense Ministry on February 25, 2020.
Yamina relies on sectoral unity to prevent losing votes to other parties

Party leaders such as Bennett and Shaked have repeatedly argued that Yamina remains the only party that formally opposes the establishment of a Palestinian state

Benny Gantz, head of Blue and White party, looks on as he gives a statement to the media in Ramat Ga
Blue and White's mission to oust Netanyahu failing to draw soft-right vote

Blue and White remains dedicated to ousting Netanyahu, but hasn’t succeeded in convincing its target audience on the soft Right.

Israel elections:time to vote.
Palestinians don't expect 'real changes' after Israel's elections

The only "glimmer of hope that can turn the tables and change all the calculations is the possibility that US Democratic candidate Bernie Sanders would win the upcoming US presidential election."

Israeli Arab voting
Joint List MK: Donald Trump is motivating Arabs to vote

"After a decade in office, and in light of corruption charges, we hope that the elections tomorrow will finally put an end to the Netanyahu era."

Yisrael Beytenu pledges no 4th elections, plan to form gov't remains hazy

Liberman has promised “surprises” and undisclosed “alternate” solutions to Israel’s political crisis after the election.

Blue and White leader Benny Gantz at a press conference
Gantz vows to form national reconciliation council

Says Netanyahu wouldn't attack Iran.

85% of Arab students support Joint List after mock debate in Kfar Qasim

Two hundred Arab students from Kfar Qasim high school attended an election conference last week to get excited about this Monday's Israeli election.

Liberman: Netanyahu told Jordan he wouldn't annex Jordan Valley

The Likud Party responded by calling Liberman's statement "a complete lie."

Democratic Union leader Nitzan Horowitz
Nitzan Horowitz: Blue and White MKs may defect to Likud after election

Labor-Gesher-Meretz head Amir Peretz suggested a center-left minority government backed by both Avigdor Liberman and the Joint List may be in order.

Is Israel on track to the fourth election?

In Context: The final lap... until the next one

Facebook removes fake accounts designed to keep Arab Israelis from voting

The Arabic-language accounts were uncovered by the nonprofit organization Democratic Bloc and were confirmed removed on Tuesday.

Israelis abroad struggle over whether to fly home for 3rd election

With Israelis heading to the polls Tuesday for an unprecedented third time in less than a year, some Israelis expats are declining to get on a plane to cast a ballot.

Amid political gridlock, Israel’s Arab citizens see opportunities

According to several polls, the Joint List, a coalition of the four largest Arab-majority parties, will gain at least one more seat this time around, raising its representation to 14.

An ultra-Orthodox Jewish man walks past a Likud election campaign poster depicting Israeli Prime Min
‘Stability voters’ shift to Likud as turnout set to decide race - analysis

As time has gone on in the campaign, “stability voters” have shifted rightward to Likud and its satellite parties, as evidenced by recent polls.

Benjamin Netanyahu (L) and Benny Gantz (R)
Polls find Netanyahu edging toward 61-seat blocking majority

Asked who is most fit to be prime minister, 45% said Netanyahu, 36% Blue and White leader Benny Gantz, 13% none of the above and seven percent said they did not know.

Traffic moves past a Blue and White party election campaign poster, depicting party leader Benny Gan
Poll finds 30% of Israelis expect fourth election

Similar percentage fear getting coronavirus.

Ice cream cone (illustrative)
Jerusalem Municipality offers free ice cream on Election Day

The free ice cream will be available to customers spending NIS 20 or more at retailers throughout the city, after bringing a receipt to select ice cream retailers.

Liberman: We will form a govt without Netanyahu, Deri, Litzman and Gafni

Liberman also defended his decision to break censorship and reveal that Israeli officials visited Qatar recently to coordinate the transfer of cash payments from Qatar to Hamas in Gaza.

How many Israelis are eligible to vote in the upcoming election?

Since the last elections held in September, the number of eligible voters aged 18 and up has risen by 62,000 or 1.1%

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