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We still don’t know who will be the next Israeli Prime Minister

We still don’t know who will be the next Israeli Prime Minister

Will there be a third election?

When we covered the Israeli elections in April 2019, we assumed that someone, likely Likud led by Benjamin Netanyahu, would emerge with a majority coalition in the 120-seat Knessed. But it didn’t happen, with Netanyahu unable to form a coalition.

So Israel held a second election in September, and once again Netanyahu emerged with the best chance of putting together a coalition.

But once again, he couldn’t do it.

So Blue and White party leader Benny Gantz has been given the chance.

The Times of Israel reported:

President Reuven Rivlin on Wednesday tasked Benny Gantz, the Blue and White party leader, with forming Israel’s next government, after Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu announced earlier this week that he had failed to do so.

Gantz, like Netanyahu before him, now has 28 days to try and form a government, though the prime minister-designate is seen as being no more likely to manage the task….

In a possible reference to Gantz’s previous promise not to sit in a government with Netanyahu or the ultra-Orthodox parties, Rivlin said, “As long as the boycotts and delegitimization of groups in Israeli society, as long as there is no real will to come to compromise and agreement, there will not be a government.

Netanyahu was initially tasked by Rivlin with trying to form a government based on the strength of his pact with right-wing and ultra-Orthodox parties to negotiate as a bloc of 55 MKs of the Knesset’s 120 lawmakers after September’s inconclusive elections (Likud: 32; Shas: 9; United Torah Judaism: 7 and Yamina: 7).

Gantz heads a bloc of 54 MKs from the center, left and Arab parties (Blue and White: 33; Labor-Gesher: 6; Democratic Camp: 5; and 10 out of 13 MKs from the mainly Arab Joint List).

Don’t count Netanyahu out, just yet. It’s unlikely that Gantz can get a majority, and any hope he has would have to include anti-Zionist Arab parties, but that would rule out Avigdor Liberman joining the coalition, and his 8 seats are needed to get a majority.

There is a possibility of a rotating Prime Ministership between Gantz and Netanyahu, but Netanyahu was unable to pull that off when he had the mandate.

So there may be a Round Three.


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It’s hard to drain the swamp when the swamp appoints the leader. You need a president to be able to drain the swamp.

Might be a simple answer and I missed it, but during this period of time is Netanyahu still in control? Or is the government just floundering about?

A country with no government?

Truly a land of milk and honey!

    Milhouse in reply to hopp singg. | October 25, 2019 at 12:00 am

    Nope. Not only does the old government continue in a caretaker capacity, but the real government in Israel is the career civil service and the judiciary; they dictate to the elected government what decisions it must make, and they don’t take no for an answer. That’s why no matter how right-wing a government is elected, the left remains firmly in control.

The latest polls show that a third election would produce the same result as the last two. The two blocks have equal support, and Lieberman keeps his support. So long as Lieberman won’t join a government with the haredim and the right, or one with the Arabs, the ridiculous Gantz/Lapid/Yaalon/Nissenkern/Ashkenazi circus tent sticks together and refuses to serve under Netanyahu, Lapid and the haredim refuse to serve with each other, and Otzma keeps siphoning off 3-4 seats trying to cross the threshold on its own, the puzzle cannot be solved.

    Tom Servo in reply to Milhouse. | October 25, 2019 at 10:38 am

    In most countries, historically, a situation as ridiculous as this would call for a military coup and the abolition of the legislature for a time. I’m not saying that it will happen here, of course – but it would be better than what is happening.

    For all of the things it does right, Israel has a horrible government structure.

      Milhouse in reply to Tom Servo. | October 26, 2019 at 10:19 pm

      I don’t know what you mean. The part we’re seeing now is a very normal structure for a modern democracy. Many/most democracies have similar arrangements. The problem is not in the structure but in the division of the electorate.

      Israel does have some very strange and horrible aspects to the structure of its government — the fact that the judicial and legal establishment staged a successful coup about 20-30 years ago, and now the career DOJ and the Solicitor General are the real government. They are not chosen by the elected government, they cannot be fired by the elected government, and the elected government must obey their orders. And as we’re seeing now, anyone who runs afoul of them risks prison and ruin.

    HImmanuelson in reply to Milhouse. | October 26, 2019 at 3:15 am

    Well, eventually Netenyahu will be charged with the crimes and will either step down or will be kicked out by Likud. Then that’ll enable other possible deals. 🙂

      Milhouse in reply to HImmanuelson. | October 26, 2019 at 10:15 pm

      Don’t bet on it. The potential charges are ridiculous on their face. In no other country would this whole circus ever take place; Mandelblit’s position as effective dictator of Israel, someone who is independent of the elected government and whose orders the government must obey, and who can retroactively invent crimes and charge people with them, is repugnant to any modern notion of how a state is run. If he lays the charges without showing credible evidence of something that most normal people would consider a crime, then I expect Netanyahu to refuse to resign, and I expect the majority of Likud MKs to back him.

In the mean time life goes on as normal in Jerusalem. The elections are like a TV Sitcom. Until we can replace the Bureaucrats and the Leftist High Court nothing will change. Only the Demographics are changing to more haredim because they have more children.