Center-Left Bloc Could Tie Netanyahu: Poll

Israeli Election Tightens in Final Days

By JTA

Published January 18, 2013.

Israel’s general election on Jan. 22 could see a left-wing coalition matching the rightist bloc’s projected 46 seats, according to the last poll before voting.

The poll by the Dahaf polling company was based on the replies of 1,000 adults. It predicts 32 seats for Benjamin Netanyahu and Avigdor Lieberman’s Halikud Beiteinu; 14 seats for Naftali Bennett’s Jewish Home party and two seats for Otzma Le’Israel, an ultra-rightist rightist party.

This constellation could be matched by the left-wing’s predicted 46 seats through a union of Labor’s 17 seats with the 13 seats that the poll predicts would go to Yair Lapid’s centrist Yesh Atid party and the 16 seats expected to go to Tzippi Livni’s HaTnua party, Meretz and Kadima.

But this alliance is not assured. Unlike Livni and Labor Chairwoman Shelly Yacimovitch, Lapid has not excluded joining a coalition led by Netanyahu.

Shas and Torah Judaism – two ultra-Orthodox parties which are seen as right-leaning though they have joined left-wing coalitions – garnered a total of 17 seats in the poll, which was published by Yedioth Ahronoth on Friday, the last day before the elections in which media are permitted by law to publish polling results.

A total of eleven seats went to Israel’s two Arab parties, Balad and Ra’am Ta’al, and to the leftist Hadash party, which are not seen as part of the center-left bloc but have supported center-left governments from outside the government.

The poll had an error margin of 0.9 seats for a two-seat party and up to 3.2 seats in the case of Halikud Beiteinu.



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