Israel Elections: Rivlin to vote for the last time as president

In addition to this being Rivlin's last presidential vote, it will also be his last opportunity to appoint a member of Knesset to form the next government.

President Reuven Rivlin voting for the 23rd Knesset on Monday (photo credit: MARK NEYMAN/GPO)
President Reuven Rivlin voting for the 23rd Knesset on Monday
(photo credit: MARK NEYMAN/GPO)
President Reuven Rivlin will vote for the last time as President in Tuesday’s elections. No other president, including those who served two terms before the law was changed, has voted five times in Knesset elections during his tenure.
Rivlin, who took office on July 24, 2014, voted in the elections for the 20th Knesset in March 2015, for the 21st Knesset in April 2019, for the 22nd Knesset in September 2019, the 23rd Knesset in March 2020 and will now be voting for the 24th Knesset in March 2021.
Unlike his four immediate predecessors, who in their private capacities were not residents of Jerusalem, Rivlin has not and will not vote at the Jerusalem School for the Arts, which is less than a five-minute drive from the President’s Residence. He will vote instead at a school in Beit Hakerem, close to the home to which he will return in the second week of July.
Fears have been expressed that due to coronavirus and the general lack of public confidence in the political system, there will be a low voter turnout. If this happens, it will indicate a reversal of the famous Churchillian quote: “Never was so much owed by so many to so few.” The quote for the current situation may be: “Never was so much owed by so few to so many.”
The current population of Israel is in excess of nine million. The Knesset comprises 120 members. The outgoing government has 27 ministers. The next government, depending on the number of coalition parties and their demands, could have even more ministers, but hopefully less.
Superfluous ministries, such as Jerusalem Affairs and Diaspora Affairs, are created to accommodate coalition demands or because the prime minister owes a favor to one of his staunch loyalists.  
The mayor of Jerusalem, aided by the Jerusalem Development Authority, does not need a minister standing over his head. No other city in Israel has a minister in addition to a mayor.
Diaspora Affairs are the purview of the Foreign Ministry and the Jewish Agency for Israel. As such, there is no need for a special ministry. The cost of maintaining superfluous ministries comes to millions of shekels, which could be used for urgent community needs in different parts of the country.
Even if these two ministries are scrapped, the money saved cannot be diverted without a national budget, and Israel has been for far too long without one.
As yet, no one knows what the the outcome elections will be. The surveys taken to date are not necessarily correct because they are based on specific questions that offer little or no leeway. Furthermore, respondents do not always tell the truth, or they change their minds about which party to vote for.
In addition to this being Rivlin’s last presidential vote, it will also be his last opportunity to appoint a Knesset member to form the next government.
Traditionally, the new government comes to the President’s Residence to be photographed with the president. What remains a big question mark is whether it will be possible to pose for such a photograph before this one leaves office.