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Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Liveblog: Without Lieberman, Livni has no chance

Israel Radio reports that with 86% of the votes counted the following are the seats:

Kadima 29
Likud 27
Yisrael Beiteinu 15
Labor 13
Shas 11
United Torah Judaism 4
National Union 4
Raam - Tal United Arab List 4
Meretz 3
Balad 3
Jewish Home 3
Chadash 3

The Arab parties said tonight that they will not recommend Kadima to form the new government because of Operation Cast Lead. Unless Kadima gets Lieberman to recommend them - which appears unlikely - there is no way Kadima will head the next government.

There's now an interview with Shai Bazak on Israel Radio who thinks that Kadima will go into a government led by the Likud. He says Kadima cannot afford to be in the opposition. But Likud won't turn to Kadima until they have offered positions to their natural partners on the right.


Israel Radio just gave 'almost final' numbers (95% counted). Here are the numbers.

Kadima 28
Likud 27
Yisrael Beiteinu 14
Labor 13
Shas 11
Raam - Tal United Arab List 5
United Torah Judaism 5
National Union 4
Chadash (Communists) 4
Meretz 3
Balad (Arab) 3
Jewish Home 3

Labor has said that they see themselves in opposition.

Israel Radio quoted 'senior Kadima politicians' who said that Livni made a party tonight and they may find themselves in opposition in the morning. They are ticked off at Livni.

What could still change here is the soldiers' votes.


At 2:42 AM, Blogger Joe said...


How exactly does this work? Once the results are official, assuming Kadima still leads Likud by that margin...who exactly decides what party will be picked to form the next government? Peres? How long before he must decide?

At 3:30 AM, Blogger M Brueschke said...

I'm not that familiar with how the Parliamentary systems work for government formation.

Do this mean Netanyahu is likely to be the new PM?

Color me a confused two-party guy here in the States.

And thanks again for the work you do here Carl, this is one of my "everyday" blogs I visit now.

At 3:52 AM, Blogger Carl in Jerusalem said...

Joe, M Brueschke and everyone else,

I discussed this a few days ago.

At 4:04 AM, Blogger Hutzpan said...

Ynet.co.il has results for 98% voices counted:

Likud 27
Kadima 28
Avoda 13
Israel Beiteinu 15
shas 11
meretz 3
yahadut a-tora 4
ha-bayyit a-ehudy 3
ha-yehud a-leumi 4
hadash 4
raam 5
balad 3

At 4:43 AM, Blogger NormanF said...

The soldiers' vote could end making it a tie between Kadima and the Likud. I think Tzipi Livni may have crowed victory too early.


At 6:15 AM, Blogger LB said...

Tibi had also announced earlier that he will, in no way, assist Livni, or any party that voted for the disqualification of the Arab parties - leaving her with a "blocking" bloc of 7 fewer seats.

If Bibi can prevent Lieberman and Shas from selling out - he's won.

At 6:36 AM, Blogger Daniel434 said...

With all the recent "wars" in Israel and the debacle in Lebanon, how is it even this close? (not to mention Iran) What is wrong with Israel?

I do understand though, that, the right-wing Israeli groups are gaining major ground and increasing in big numbers of seats in the Knesset. So as a whole, the "good guys" are winning but It still confuses me that Kadima can get so many seats.

At 6:49 AM, Blogger LB said...

Daniel - I'm just as baffled as you. The only explanation I can find is that the media's character assassination of Bibi has been rather successful, and so people voted the other way. Just because רק לא ביבי - Just not/Anyone but Bibi

At 6:58 AM, Blogger NormanF said...

Bibi's treatment of Moshe Feiglin turned off a good deal of the Right. In other words, people were prepared to vote for the Right, just not for Bibi. And that is exactly what happened. If he wants to win it over, he has to prove it through deeds, not through empty rhetoric.

This really is the Likud's last chance to get it right.

At 6:58 AM, Blogger Ashan said...

For those who can read Hebrew (and for those who can take an educated guess): http://www.knesset.gov.il/elections18/heb/results/main_results.aspx

At 5 am here, with more than 3M votes counted: Kadima - 22.5%, Likud - 21.4%.

2 things I can't imagine:
1) that Lieberman will side with Kadima
2) how anyone could have voted for that lame-brained, failure sock-puppet Livni (What? Israel wants a continuation of Olmert? Sell out Israel? Sheesh!)

At 7:03 AM, Blogger NormanF said...

Daniel, I see it as vote for the Land Of Israel and for the Right but not a vote for Bibi. They are two very different things. Israel faces two problems: Iran and Hamas/Hezbollah. The key is Iran. Defanging the nuclear threat from it is a very difficult challenge but one within Israel's means to address since no one else is going to defend her. That is a lesson Kadima failed to grasp. We can only hope the Likud understands that Israel cannot subcontract out her national security to other nations, that in the final analysis, Israel's defense is her responsibility alone.

At 7:03 AM, Blogger Ashan said...

One observation: Lieberman took votes away from Bibi. Bibi should have attacked Livni and her failed actions as FM earlier and more persistently. He should have pounded her on her connection to the hated Olmert.

At 7:07 AM, Blogger Daniel434 said...


Thanks for the insight. Israeli politics seems to as hard to grasp as how we in the states elected Obama.

At 7:08 AM, Blogger NormanF said...

Ashan, I think Kadima's strength show how little life is left in the old Israeli Left and also underscores its own failure to make even more headway, what with all the advantages of incumbency going for it. Most of the people in it and its voters by extension, believe in nothing other than self-advancement. Just ask Ehud Olmert.

At 7:10 AM, Blogger NormanF said...

Ashan, one of the complaints in this election is how little the parties seemed to differ from each other. You can see it in the amazingly narrow vote spreads among them.

At 7:32 AM, Blogger Findalis said...

Lieberman is already talking to Bibi. It looks like Kadima cannot make a collation and Likud will be able to.

Let us pray that Bibi doesn't crumple up and die like he did last time.

At 8:08 AM, Blogger NormanF said...

Bibi will have to recognize that a rightist coalition is all that is on offer. And while he would like a national unity government to take on Iran, he's not going to get it.

At 8:12 AM, Blogger LB said...

The only way a national union government will happen is if Bibi gives up and lets Livni run the show.

By the way, I think it's pretty incredible how Peretz, Halutz and Olmert are all remembered as failures for Lebanon2006, but Livni somehow has escaped that. And she's the architect of the failure known as UNSC 1701...

At 8:23 AM, Blogger Daniel434 said...

By the way, I think it's pretty incredible how Peretz, Halutz and Olmert are all remembered as failures for Lebanon2006, but Livni somehow has escaped that. And she's the architect of the failure known as UNSC 1701...

Outstanding point.

At 8:30 AM, Blogger NormanF said...

Tzipi Livni is Kadima's tabula rasa Its like all the failures, shortcomings and mistakes it made don't reflect on her even though she was part of them.

In view of Kadima's record, I for one, don't understand why its still popular with a good chunk of the country.

At 1:23 PM, Blogger Daniel434 said...

Since this thread is popular, I have a question:

I heard a Christian Pastor say that the country of Jordan is a mythical non-arab country created by Winston Churchill. Is this true?

Please forgive my ignorance of middle east history and politics.

At 9:12 PM, Blogger Comrade Tovya said...

If you ask me, Livni doesn't stand a chance either way.

At 7:31 AM, Blogger LB said...

Daniel - I'm not really an expert on Jordanian history, but I think it's a stretch to say it's not really an Arab country and it was created by Churchill. The Hashemites (royal family), however, as far as I know have no real roots in Jordan and are, in fact, from Saudi Arabia. Jordan has an enormous Palestinian population (anywhere from 60% to 80% according to wikipedia).

At 7:37 AM, Blogger Daniel434 said...

@LB: Thanks, man. I'm going to start doing some research into the topic out of curiosity.

At 8:18 AM, Blogger Carl in Jerusalem said...


Search the phrase "rump kingdom" in my blog. I have discussed this many times and you will find the whole history.

At 5:08 AM, Blogger Steven said...


How can Israeli's vote for Kadima? They have most of the votes, but they are an extremely destructive party. They are threatening to divide the land and give it to sworn enemies, they are incompetent during war, hopelessly corrupt. What are Israeli's thinking by voting for such a horrific political party?


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