Poll that finds Netanyahu beatable mocked

Politicians responded that past attempts to put well-known names in one new centrist party did not yield as good results in ballot boxes as it did in polls.

By GIL STERN STERN HOFFMAN
March 25, 2016 00:38
1 minute read.
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu attends a Likud party meeting at parliament in Jerusalem

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu attends a Likud party meeting at parliament in Jerusalem. (photo credit: REUTERS)

 
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Politicians made fun of a poll that ran on the cover of Haaretz Thursday that found that Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu could be defeated if three key figures joined forces.

The poll asked respondents which party they would support if a joint list were formed by Kulanu chairman Moshe Kahlon, former IDF chief of staff Gabi Ashkenazi, and Netanyahu’s former No. 2 in the Likud, Gideon Sa’ar. The poll purposely did not say who would lead the new list.

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According to the poll, the new party would win 23 Knesset seats, Likud 22, Zionist Union 15, Yesh Atid 13, the Joint (Arab) List 13, Bayit Yehudi 10, Shas and United Torah Judaism seven each, and Meretz and Yisrael Beytenu five each.

The new party’s support would come from prospective voters of the Likud, Yesh Atid and Yisrael Beytenu, which each received less support than have in other recent polls in which a three-headed alternative was not proposed.

Politicians responded that past attempts to put well-known names in one new centrist party did not yield as good results in ballot boxes as it did in polls.

They cited the Center Party that was founded in 1999 by former generals Yitzhak Mordechai and Amnon Lipkin-Shahak and former Likud ministers Dan Meridor and Roni Milo.

Science and Technology Minister Ophir Akunis (Likud) said the poll belonged on the Purim spoof pages of the newspaper.



He said it was “not serious to take polls so far away from elections.”

Yisrael Beytenu chairman Avigdor Liberman took offense to the poll’s prediction that his party would go down from six seats to five. Other recent polls have predicted the party would gain support.

“We will get at least 11 mandates,” Liberman told Israel Radio. “There is no way such a party can be formed with all the ego that is there.”

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