May 20, 2019

Israel’s Election Handbook: The Last Week of Pre-Game

President Trump at the Israel Museum. Jerusalem May 23, 2017 President Trump at the Israel Museum. Jerusalem May 23, 2017

We call this format a Timesaver Guide to Israel’s Coming Elections. This will be a usual feature on Rosner’s Domain until April 9. We hope to make it short, factual, devoid of election hype, and of he-said-she-said no news, unimportant inside baseball gossip.

Bottom Line

By the end of the week, we will know who is running and where.

Main News

On Thursday, the final lists of candidates are submitted. The merge and splits period is almost over.

Benny Gantz added to his list the Labor Union chairman.

Right-religious The Jewish Home and Tkumah agreed on a joint list.

Meretz has a new list, with three women: an Arab, a Druze, an Ethiopian – all among the first six candidates.

Developments to Watch

Political: The Trump peace plan becomes a new focus of the political conversation. Netanyahu warns: Do not reject it before you see it. The plan could change minds on the right before Election Day (and send voters to more hawkish parties), and change minds on the center after Election Day (and convince the never-Netanyahu parties to join a pro-Trump-plan coalition).

Political: This is crunch time for Gantz and Yair Lapid to decide if they want to join forces and run in one list.

Political: Moshe Feiglin’s libertarian Zehut party is crossing the threshold in a few polls. More polls are needed to determine that this is not an outlier.

Personal: There is a new Foreign Minister.

Personal: Small parties are struggling to merge or perish, and politicians are about to end their careers, among them, possibly, Tzipi Livni.

The Blocs and Their Meaning

We begin by showing the 67 coalition. This is what Netanyahu considers his “base”. The parties that can re-form his previous stable coalition. According to the polls, it will not be a 67 seat coalition, but it can be large enough to give Netanyahu the power to dictate his terms to all other potential members of any coalition.

And here is the graph that tells you who is gaining and who is losing compared to the 2015 Knesset. Here you can see 1. the stability of Likud, 2. The stability of the Arab parties (one loses 4, another one gains 4), 3. Where Gantz gets his votes (Labor + Hatnuah + Kulanu).