THE ISRAELI ELECTION: CURRENT STATUS

Currently, with about 97% of the votes counted, Benjamin Netanyahu’s Likud Party has won 31 seats in Israel’s 120 seat Knesset (Parliament).  His opponent, the Blue and White (Kahol Lavan) Party has won 33 seats.

When the blocs of other parties are added, the 2 seat difference still obtains, with Netayahu at 55 seats and Gantz at 57 seats – neither of them with a majority in the Knesset, thus neither of them in a position to claim victory.

The remaining eight seats are almost certainly going to be controlled by the Yisrael Beiteinu party, which is headed by Avigdor Lieberman,

Avigdor, a former Minister of Defense and Minister of Foreign Affairs, supports the creation of an independent state of Palestine – presumably because, though he is a secularist, it would remove most Arabs from Israel and insure its status as a Jewish state.

Lieberman once was a member of Likud, then broke away, then formed a coalition with Likud, then broke away.  What he does now, what he will demand and who he will ultimately support is very much up in the air.

So that’s where we are.

Sort of makes you appreciate our electoral system a little more, doesn’t it?

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