Likud, bad polls can be good news

This was first posted on my personal blog, Shiloh Musings. I'd say that the "bad news polls" of late are playing in the hands of the Likud campaign strategists. The latest polls are giving Labor-Livni more seats than Likud. The combined Labor-Hatnua list would win three more Knesset seats than the Likud, 25 to 22, if the election were held now, according to a Panels Research poll taken for The Jerusalem Post and its Hebrew sister publication, Maariv Sof Hashavua. (Jerusalem Post)
One of the key planks in the Likud platform always is a warning that if you want Netanyahu as Prime Minister, which according to the same polls a pretty steady half the population does want, voting for any other party will endanger that. Panels has been asking whether respondents want Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to remain in his post after the election.
In Thursday’s poll, 58% said “no,” up from 51% two weeks ago but below the peak of 66% on December 11. Fifty-four percent said Netanyahu represented Israel well in France last this week, 32% said he did not, and 14% had no opinion.
A majority said it was right of Netanyahu to call for French Jews to make aliya, even if the French government does not approve of such statements. So I have no doubt that the scare tactics of the Herzog-Livni two headed monster will dominate their campaign. Note that the Jerusalem Post purposely didn't give the percentage of support the polls showed for Herzog or Livni.
This is no doubt because they were so low that it would show the obvious fact that the vast majority of Israelis do not want to see either of those two in power.
Bibi's campaign staff isn't stupid, and I trust that they will stress that in their Knesset Elections campaign. Herzog and Livni versus PM Binyamin Netanyahu and for the umpteenth time, I'll just remind you that the Israeli political election system is rather complex. The system is strictly proportional representation: We vote for parties and accept the list of candidates in the order set beforehand.
The President of Israel (who is not a policy maker) consults with the various party leaders after elections to see whom (or which party) they prefer to lead the country. Then the President offers that party's leader the chance to form (negotiate) a ruling coalition. If he/she succeeds, then the new government is formed. If not, then another party's leader is given the chance.
Don't forget that elections will be on March 17, which is almost two months from now. And a lot can happen before then.