(photo credit: Ariel Jerozolimski)
The Shinui Party, which only two elections ago enjoyed a meteoric rise into Israeli politics, may fade away as quickly as it appeared in the upcoming elections scheduled for March.
According to Army Radio, a poll taken by the Geocartographic Institute, headed by Professor Avi Degani, shows that Shinui won't pass the minimum percentage of votes needed to enter the Knesset.
Shinui MK Avraham Poraz said that party chairman Yosef (Tommy) Lapid was not responsible for the drop in the polls. "This is a public psychosis that occurs in times of crisis, therefore the voters are turning to Prime Minister Sharon," said Poraz, who noted "all of our voters moved to Kadima.
"On the one hand they are excited about Sharon, but on the other hand they really don't want Shas. I say in the clearest possible terms to whoever voted for us in the past, that if you do not vote for us now Shas will come back - in a big way."
A Shinui source remarked, however, "Other polls showed that Shinui would easily reach five mandates."
The Geocartographic poll also pointed to a drastic drop in Labor support, with only 17 mandates, while Kadima, projected to receive 42 mandates, has maintained its high level of support. The Likud showed slight signs of a comeback, scoring 16 mandates in the poll.