MK Ahmed Tibi (UAL - Ta'al) in the Knesset..
(photo credit: MARC ISRAEL SELLEM/THE JERUSALEM POST)
Arab citizens are divided over whom to support in general election, but most support United Arab List- Ta’al, headed by MK Ahmed Tibi, according to polling data the Statnet research institute shared with The Jerusalem Post.
A united bloc headed by Tibi would get the most mandates of any Arab constellation, with around 11 Knesset seats, and would get 10 if Hadash chairman Muhammad Barakei or Balad leader Jamal Zahalka headlined it.
The vast majority (75 percent) of respondents support the Arab parties running together on one list.
If the parties run separately, as in the past, 26% support United Arab List-Ta’al, 18% Hadash, 10% Balad and 15% Jewish parties. Another 28% of Arab voters are undecided.
Assuming that Arab turnout for the March 17 election will be higher than 62% and the distribution of votes of the undecided voters is distributed proportionally, Statnet predicts Tibi’s party would get between five and six seats in the next Knesset.
Hadash would get around four, Balad would fail to reach the 3.25% threshold and so get zero seats, and the Zionist parties would get around three mandates from Arab voters.
The poll was commissioned by former United Arab List-Ta’al MK Taleb a-Sana in order to check the popularity of Arab parties and various scenarios of uniting them.
It was conducted on Tuesday and Wednesday last week and included phone interviews of 403 Arab citizens nationwide, not including east Jerusalem.
The survey was conducted in Arabic and 63% of the respondents were men and 37% women, with a margin of error of 3.5 percentage points.
Of those that were polled, 81% were Muslim, 9% Druse and 10% Christian.
Most of the Muslims polled (31%) said they support Tibi’s party, while only 6% of the Druse polled said so, and no Christians.
Druse said overwhelmingly (71%) they would support Jewish parties.
Fifty-nine percent of the Christians polled said they would vote for Arab-Jewish party Hadash.
The parties – United Arab List-Ta’al, Hadash and Balad – have been unable to close a deal to run together, much less agree on who would lead the new grouping for the election.