Final poll results: Right - 61, Left - 59Naftali Bennett's Jewish Home party. As a result, the Right-Left balance as seen by the media is now 61-59. Of course, that count's Yair Lapid's There is a Future party as being Left, and if you've been reading what I've been posting today, that characterization is not particularly nuanced.
The votes of 200,000 soldiers, plus those of prisoners and people in hospitals, were counted a day later than the regular vote.
These ballots are called “double envelope votes,” because many of the voters are listed in their army base or hospital, as well as in their home town, and it takes longer to count them, because the Central Elections Committee must check to make sure they did not vote twice.
In the final count, Likud won 31 Knesset seats, Yesh Atid 19, Labor 15, Bayit Yehudi 12, Shas 11, United Torah Judaism seven, Meretz and The Tzipi Livni Party six each, the three Arab parties a total of 11, and Kadima two. This gives the Right bloc 61 seats and the Center-Left bloc 59 in the next Knesset.And for those of you who have been following the back and forth between Yaacov Lozowick and me on Twitter, you will see that Yaacov correctly predicted the Prime Minister's proposals on the major cabinet seats, and that I correctly predicted Avigdor Lieberman's response.
The prime minister would prefer to give the Foreign Ministry position to Lapid, who speaks perfect British-accented English and whose moderate image could improve Israel’s ties with the United States and Europe. But Liberman said he wanted to return to his former job once he is clear of his legal troubles and suggested that Lapid be finance minister.
“I think that Lapid, who speaks about the middle class and the socioeconomic protests, should naturally focus on domestic issues and take the Finance portfolio,” Liberman said in a press conference at Yisrael Beytenu’s Jerusalem headquarters.Here are some possible coalitions:
Read the whole thing.
The Right wing government will be used by Netanyahu as a threat to keep other parties in line. The unity government won't happen because Labor won't go into it and Netanyahu doesn't want Livni. Netanyahu's ideal coalition could happen, although it's not clear to me why he would want Kadima. Mofaz has already been part of Netanyahu's government once and walked away way too fast. Lapid's ideal coalition also won't happen because it gives too much power to Bayit Yehudi and because Netanyahu doesn't want Livni.