Powered by WebAds

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Liveblog: Initial exit poll results

Here are the initial exit poll results:

Israel Radio and Channel 1 Television:

Kadima - 30
Likud - 28
Yisrael Beiteinu - 14
Labor - 13
Shas - 9
Meretz - 5
United Torah Judaism - 5
Jewish Home - 4
Nation Union - 3
Chadash (Communist) - 4
Ram - Tal (Arab) - 2
Balad (Arab) - 3

Total: Right 63, Left 48, 'Minorities' - 9



Channel 2's and 10's poll results show Kadima 30 Likud 28 and Kadima 29 Likud 27, respectively, but the Right leads the Left in every poll, which means that Livni may not be able to form a government and that Netanyahu will be Prime Minister. Maybe.

The Likud is extremely disappointed with the poll results and is now counting how many MK's will recommend to the President that the Likud form the next government.


Here are the full results from Channels 2 and 10 (at least for the largest parties):
According to the Channel 2 poll, Likud will take 27 seats, Kadima will hold 29 seats and Labor 13 seats. Yisrael Beiteinu will have 15 seats in the new Knesset.

The Channel 10 poll indicated that Likud will take 28 seats, Kadima will hold 30 seats and Labor 13 seats. Yisrael Beiteinu will have 15 seats.
Labor will go to new internal elections. This is a disaster for them.

A couple of minutes ago, Israel Radio interviewed Likud MK Gilad Erdan who pointed out that in the outgoing Knesset, the Left bloc is 70 seats, so this is a real turnaround.


Here's a chart that shows the top four parties.

Don't fall into the trap of thinking (assuming these results hold up - remember 1996 which was our "Dewey beats Truman" election) that these results mean that Tzipi Livni will form the next government. All the polls show that the Right is solidly ahead.

Assuming that Avigdor Lieberman doesn't recommend Kadima.


Actual results are starting to come in. The numbers are too small to start posting. When they get real, I will have them for you.


Here's live coverage in English (assuming it works) from Arutz Sheva (Hat Tip: NY Nana)

The coverage is scheduled to continue until at least 3:00 am Israel time (1:00 am GMT, 8:00 pm EST, 5:00 pm PST).


Several web sites are reporting that Avigdor Lieberman of Yisrael Beiteinu will announce tomorrow (Wednesday) which party he will recommend to form the next government. Yisrael Beiteinu is denying the report - saying Lieberman never said that and that it's not necessarily so.

Please keep in mind that the polls here are often inaccurate. In 1996, we went to sleep around midnight thinking that Shimon Peres and Labor had won the elections. We even heard Uzi Baram, who was Minister of Tourism and from the Labor party, thank the Arabs for having given Labor the election. At 6:00 am, Netanyahu and Likud took the lead and won the election.

But so far, I have not heard anything that indicates that the actual results are any different than the exit polls.


Shas has confirmed that they will support Netanyahu.

Netanyahu will try to get Lieberman to commit before Netanyahu makes his speech tonight. That's what Begin did in 1981. Here are the 1981 Knesset results. The night of the elections, Begin announced that he had 61 MK's committed to support him and that he would form a government within three weeks. And he did. When 61 MK's went to the President (then Navon) and said that they favored Begin, the President had no choice but to choose Begin.


Israel Radio is now interviewing Navon's assistant who points out that Section 10 of the Basic Law - Government provides that if 61 MK's recommend someone to form the government, the President has no discretion. If 61 MK's recommend Netanyahu, he will be Prime Minister and Livni will not be given a chance to form a government.


For those wondering about turnout.
Following the closing of polling stations around the country, the final voter turnout stood at 65.2 percent of the eligible 5.2 million voters, the Central Elections Committee (CEC) said on Tuesday night.

The turnout was slightly higher than the previous election in 2006, but lower than the voter turnout in the 2003 election.

2006 saw the lowest turnout rate in Israeli history, with only 63.55% of voters casting their ballots by the day's end. The previous record had been set in the 2003 elections, with a 67.8 percent voter turnout.
Consider, however, that one in every eight voters is currently out of the country, and there are no absentee ballots here except for the diplomatic corps. On the other hand, many of those one out of eight are people who have permanently settled abroad and - unlike US citizens who have permanently settled abroad - do not file or pay Israeli taxes.


JPost is reporting that Yisrael Beiteinu will meet on Wednesday at 2:00 to decide whom to support.


Israel Radio is reporting that Binyamin Netanyahu and Avigdor Lieberman spoke tonight. Gidon Sa'ar (number 2 on the Likud list) confirmed the conversation (live on the radio) and believes the two will meet tomorrow. No other details are available.

Sa'ar says that Jewish Home and National Union have both committed to recommend Netanyahu. Shas committed before the election. Yisrael Beiteinu and United Torah Judaism have not yet said whom they will recommend.


Israel Radio's political analyst Hanan Crystal points out that while Yisrael Beiteinu has not yet committed, we have not heard any news of a conversation between Lieberman and Livni or of a meeting tomorrow between Lieberman and Livni.

Crystal believes that Lieberman will recommend the Likud.


Israel Radio reports that Lieberman will speak at midnight, Netanyahu sometime after 1:00 and Livni sometime after that. I will open a new post around midnight, so please keep an eye out.


At 10:11 PM, Blogger NormanF said...

Kadima may get the inside shot at forming - it could probably pick up IB, Labor, Shas and the outside Arab parties for support.


What happened?

At 10:17 PM, Blogger NormanF said...

It wasn't a popular vote of confidence in the Likud and Bibi and its telling that Kadima, the most incompetent, corrupt and amoral party in Israel's history still came out narrowly ahead.

Bibi with his foolish treatment of Moshe Feiglin, threw away a sure victory. Perceptions do matter and in the closing days, the Left rallied to Livni.

At 10:24 PM, Blogger ProfessorPelotard said...

Norman F

I agree with you that Netanyahu's treatment of Feiglin possibly cost him the victory. However, let's wait until the real results come. The exit polls are notoriously unreliable (although in this case they all support each other), and some of the small parties are very close to the edge. Things may still change - for better or for worse.

At 10:27 PM, Blogger Findalis said...

If she is the PM then it is the end of Israel. She will sell the nation out.

At 10:30 PM, Blogger NormanF said...

30+14+5+13+9+9=80. That is if IB and Shas join Kadima, it would have a majority of 71, without the Arab parties.

If Livni can't get them, Bibi would likely have the following coalition:

28+14+9+5+4+3=65. If Labor joined, that would make it 78.

So it all depends on whom Avigdor Lieberman recommends to the President to tap to form the next government.

At 10:33 PM, Blogger NormanF said...

Carl and ProfessorPelotard - there's a small chance the Likud may edge out ahead once all the votes are counted and the Right could gain additional seats at the margins.

There's no doubt though Lieberman is in the catbird's seat tonight.

At 10:40 PM, Blogger NormanF said...

Carl - as I just pointed out, Lieberman holds the trump card and he will go along with whatever suitor is willing to pay him his price. Tonight, he's the most powerful man in Israel politics. Both Kadima and the Likud will be courting him to provide the votes necessary to form a government.

At 10:43 PM, Blogger ProfessorPelotard said...

Norman F

OK, I'll bite; yes you are right. Lieberman will be the kingmaker. That is unless Peres wants to play games and gives Lieberman the chance of forming a government.

At 10:49 PM, Blogger Carl in Jerusalem said...


Yes, Lieberman is the Kingmaker. In order, I see him recommending to form the next government:

1. Netanyahu
2. Lieberman
3. No one
4. Livni

It's unlikely he would recommend Livni.

And there is no way Shas will go into a Kadima-led government (and even less chance they will recommend Livni). They publicly stated that they would recommend Netanyahu and they lost votes in this election to Yisrael Beiteinu because they weren't right wing enough.

Shas won't recommend Livni (without even accounting for the fact that she's a woman and no Haredi party could show their face in Jerusalem or Bnei Brak if they recommended a woman). No way, no how.

At 10:50 PM, Blogger Findalis said...

Now that would be interesting Lieberman. Lieberman as PM? Could you see the look on Bibi and Livini's faces? Or Mitchell's?

At 10:57 PM, Blogger ProfessorPelotard said...

If the exit polls hold up the big loser of the election is Labor. It may be very difficult if not impossible for Barak to get his rump party to agree to sit in the same government as IB. ( Yechimovich: Labor Can't Sit with Lieberman )

If that is the case Livni will not be able to form a government.

At 11:17 PM, Blogger Carl in Jerusalem said...

Professor Pelotard,

You're right.

Labor has already decided that they are probably going to opposition. The only way they will be in the government is if Kadima forms it.

There is a chance that we may have a 'rotation' government - they take turns. That happened in 1988 when there was a dead heat.

But yes, Labor was soundly defeated in this election. So was Meretz, whose chairman may resign as soon as tomorrow (that's what happened in 2006).

At 11:28 PM, Blogger Lois Koenig said...

Thanks for the hat tip, Carl.

The video is working without a problem here, and it can also be enlarged to full screen.

Thanks for your comment explaining what is happening, BTW. It is clearer than anything I have seen so far.

Livni? Feh.

At 1:20 AM, Blogger NormanF said...

Carl - you don't have a problem with a woman Prime Minister if she wasn't Tzipi Livni?

Just curious.

At 1:29 AM, Blogger Carl in Jerusalem said...


I personally have no problem. A lot of my neighbors would.

At 1:38 AM, Blogger NormanF said...

Carl, it depends less on the gender than on the character and leadership qualities of the person. And there are many women who are the equal of men. Livni just is one who is not Prime Ministerial material.

At 1:48 AM, Blogger Findalis said...

I disagree Norman. If she went back to her old ideals of her youth, she'd be a perfect PM.

Unfortunately, Livni has become too soft to be an effective PM for Israel. Any PM must be able to stand up to Obama and call him out.


Post a Comment

<< Home