More than eight dozen Israeli academics signed an ad that ran in the Haaretz Hebrew newspaper over the weekend, calling on the Israeli public to vote for the Joint List.The ad – which was headlined in bold letters, “We’re in! Are you?” – explained that the Joint List is “home for all those who believe in full civil and national equality for Arabs and Jews, ending the occupation, democracy, peace and social justice.”Signatories of the ad included 20 academics from Tel-Aviv University, 11 from Ben-Gurion University, nine from Haifa University and five from the Open University, according to a release shared Monday by the right-wing NGO Im Tirtzu. Academics from Hebrew University, Tel-Hai College, Bar-Ilan University, Sapir College, Shenkar College, the Weizmann Institute of Science, and Beit Berl College were also among the signatories.
If Arab voter turnout is higher than it was in the previous 2019 election, the Joint Arab List could potentially become the third-largest party after the election. It’s leader Ayman Odeh indicated recently that under the right conditions, he would recommend to President Reuven Rivlin that Blue and White leader Benny Gantz form a government – and would even consider joining a Center-Left coalition under his leadership.
If Odeh’s Joint List joins a government, it will be the first time in Israeli history.Alternatively, Odeh could likewise influence this new government’s policy via what is known as an obstructive bloc, or as leader of the opposition. Such a bloc would mean the Joint List would back the government from outside a minority coalition and prevent it from falling, in return for meeting its demands.Arab voter turnout in April was at an all-time low of 49%. Recent polls indicate around 56% of Arab voters will turn out today on Election Day.