Poll: Livni beating Mofaz in Kadima race

Friday polls conflict on whether FM could beat Netanyahu in a general election; show Barak behind.

netanyahu likud 248.88 (photo credit: Channel 10)
netanyahu likud 248.88
(photo credit: Channel 10)
In a two-horse race for the Kadima chairmanship Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni would beat Transportation Minister Shaul by 51 to 43 percent, according to a Yediot Aharonot poll published Friday in the wake of Prime Minister Ehud Olmert's dramatic announcement that he would not be running in the party's upcoming primary. According to the poll, Livni would also win in the first round of the primaries if all three of her opponents remained in the race, taking 41 percent of the votes as opposed to 32% for Mofaz and 13 and 10% to Public Security Minister Avi Dichter and Interior Minister Meir Sheetrit, respectively. The poll also gauged the prospective performance of Kadima in a general election with both Livni and Mofaz as its candidates for the premiership and found that despite the fact that the foreign minister would garner Kadima twice the number of seats as Mofaz - 30% of the electorate - she would still lose to Binyamin Netanyahu's Likud. In both scenarios, the Labor party, chaired by Defense Minister Ehud Barak, fell short of 20% of the votes, with 17% in a contest against a Kadima headed by Mofaz and only 15% against Livni. Two percent of Likud voters would also migrate to a Kadima led by the foreign minister, but again, this would still not suffice to best Netanyahu. A Friday poll published by Maariv showed similar trends but puts the difference between Netanyahu and Livni in a general election at over 14%, with Kadima falling to only 14.8% - versus 39.5% to Likud - in the event that Mofaz beats Livni in the September 17 primary. The Maariv poll also gave Barak less than 20% of the vote against both Livni and Mofaz in Kadima's top slot. However, several other polls, including a survey published by Ynet, gave Livni the advantage over Netanyahu in a prime ministerial bid. According to the Ynet poll Kadima would win 32 Knesset seats under Livni, with 27 going to Netanyahu's Likud and a meager 14 to Labor. Mofaz, however, would not beat Netanyahu according to the survey, which predicted 22 Kadima seats under the transportation minister- six fewer than Likud.