Prime Minister Netanyahu's numbers have gone down since he delivered a speech in front of Congress, but there are plenty of other factors at play.
By galvanizing Arab voters and creating the possibility of an Arab-led opposition, Lisa Goldman argues Joint List head Ayman Odeh has already won.
According to Zach Beauchamp, Netanyahu's refusal to offer concessions to the Palestinians has ideological roots in the father of Revisionist Zionism, Ze'ev Jabotinsky. Netanyahu's father...
Sheera Frenkel captures the disillusionment of many Israelis with Prime Minister Netanyahu -- and the sense that there may not be an alternative to take his seat.
Natan Sachs once again examines potential election scenarios, concluding that, unless Kahlon announces his intention to back Herzog or Netanyahu, we're likely to know very little on Wednesday morning.
Josh Marshall explains why, even with a several seat advantage over Prime Minister Netanyahu, Isaac Herzog will have a difficult time forming a coalition.
Results from a new survey on the Arab vote.
Israel Beiteinu, Meretz and Yachad are flirting with the threshold in recent polls. Any of them could come up short tomorrow.
Based on the polls, JJ Goldberg says that the Zionist Union will win a significant plurality in Tuesday's election, but will still have a 'tortuous climb' to form a coalition. He'll have to bring Kulanu, Yesh Atid, and the Haredim on board. This will require convincing Lapid to concede the issues he's championed since forming Yesh Atid (imposing the military draft on Haredi men, in particular) perhaps by offering him the Foreign Ministry. This could lead, Goldberg argues, to the regional peace conference championed by Yaakov Peri and supported by Lapid.
Breaking down the parties’ platforms on peace, Raphael Ahren noted that the Zionist Union “wholeheartedly endorses a two-state solution,” while “the vast majority of current and future Likud MKs are adamantly opposed to the idea, instead suggesting the indefinite continuation of the status quo or calling for a full or partial annexation of the West Bank.”
Akiva Eldar noted that if Netanyahu and Zionist Union leader Isaac Herzog form a national unity government, the two factions are far apart when it comes to the peace process.
According to JJ Goldberg, internal polls indicate that Netanyahu’s campaign may be in dire straights.
Natan Sachs argued that “a national unity government of some form now appears to be the most likely outcome.” The final coalition will likely depend on Kahlon and his Kulanu party.
- JJ Goldberg reports that “threatening relations with Israel’s most important ally hasn’t damaged Netanyahu’s reelection prospects. But his wife’s habit of recycling state-owned soda bottles from the official residence and pocketing the deposit money just might be his undoing.”
- "Hard-core loyalists call it a witch-hunt, but the base is shaking. In a poll released February 18 on Army Radio, 22% of Likud voters said they were less likely to vote Likud as a result of the findings. That’s enough to put Labor solidly on top."
- Guy Ziv notes that “far from seeing him as ‘Mr. Security,’ [Israel’s top security] experts regard Netanyahu as a weak leader whose poor judgment has eroded Israel's deterrence and harmed Israel's relationship with its most important ally, the United States, and whose lack of strategic vision undermines Israel's national security interests.”
- Instead of running with Likud, most former security officials have joined the lists of Zionist Union, Yesh Atid and Kulanu for the 2015 campaign.
Allison Kaplan Sommer analyzes the fear-based campaign ads of the Israeli right-wing.
According to Mazal Mualem, Zionist Union’s flawed campaign has “actually helped Netanyahu recover in the polls while causing enormous harm to Herzog’s chances of becoming Israel’s next prime minister.”
Based on current poll numbers, Natan Sachs looks at three broad coalition scenarios, concluding that the race is Netanyahu's to lose:
Natan Sachs says that for the Israeli left to win an election, it needs four things to happen:
- The incumbent right wing must be in trouble in its own right--Netanyahu is unpopular among the Israeli public, though not as much as he was when he was defeated in 1999.
- The left must shift and sharpen the debate to economic issues--Labor has successfully positioned itself as the voice of a left-leaning economic agenda.
- The left must present a credible, centrist alternative on national security issues--Labor has sought to alleviate its disadvantage on security issues by picking former Major General Amos Yadlin as its candidate for defense minister.
- The left must have a credible leader to capitalize on the right wing's decline--Herzog is much more popular in the Knesset than Netanyahu, but this may not be enough to form a coalition.