Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s Likud Party demanded a recount of Monday’s election and to check every polling station’s protocols in a lawsuit filed on Thursday.
The Likud also demanded that the results of the race not be published. But minutes after the Likud issued its demand, the Central Elections Committee published the final results, which contained no changes from those that have been reported over the past two days.
The Likud won 36 seats. Together with Shas’s nine, United Torah Judaism’s seven and Yamina’s six, the right-wing religious bloc garnered 58 seats – three short of the 61 MKs needed for a Knesset majority.
Blue and White won 33 seats, the Joint List 15, Labor-Gesher-Meretz seven and Yisrael Beytenu seven.
The Likud beat Blue and White, 1,350,863 to 1,219,275. Among the parties that won seven seats, UTJ beat Labor-Gesher-Meretz by 6,600 votes and Yisrael Beytenu 11,200.
Blue and White Party leader Benny Gantz said: “In a democratic country, election results and the decision of the voters must be respected.”
The far-right Otzma Yehudit Party received only 19,350 votes, nowhere close to the 3.25% electoral threshold.
The final results will only be made official Tuesday, after a recount of some six polling stations where there were anomalies. But the 5,500 votes at the six polling stations are not believed to be enough to change the distribution of the 120 seats.
There were 6,453,255 eligible voters in regular polling stations, and 71.46% of them voted.
In the polling stations for those exposed to the coronavirus, Blue and White received twice as many votes as Likud.