Israel election - started Sunday, May 6, 2012

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Israel election - started Sunday, May 6, 2012



Looks like Israel is going to the polls as well

Netanyahu gave no firm date for the vote, despite days of speculation it would be set for Sept. 4. Officials said Netanyahu, who ended a one-week mourning period earlier Sunday over the death of his father, wanted time to consult with other parties before finalizing the date. The parliament must approve new elections and their date.

Netanyahu's government, Israel's most stable in years, was scheduled to remain in power until late 2013.

But disagreements over budget demands, unsanctioned West Bank settlement construction and draft exemptions granted to ultra-religious Jewish men have created rifts inside the governing coalition.

Polls suggest Netanyahu's Likud Party is expected to win at least one-quarter of parliament's 120 seats to become the legislature's largest faction -- putting him in a comfortable position to form a majority coalition.

The outgoing government was dominated by religious and nationalist partners that failed to seriously engage the Palestinians. The coalition has also been criticized for promoting a series of bills that appeared to stifle dissent by targeting dovish groups critical of government policy.

This time, Netanyahu may emerge well positioned to put together a more moderate coalition.

The three largest centre-left parties, Labor, Kadima and Yesh Atid, together are expected to capture about 40 seats, according to recent polls. Netanyahu could invite some or all of them to join him. None of these parties has ruled out a partnership with Likud.

Early poll results rarely reflect the outcome of the voting.

The prospect of an election campaign has also set off a debate over whether Israel might try to attack Iran's nuclear facilities.



Appears that Likud and Kadima have agreed to form a "unity" government. With early election cancelled.


With 94 out of 120 seats this might be the largest governing coalition in the modern state of Israel. The Israeli left continues to shrink.


Kadima was never left. It's a middle of the road party. It is made up of the "left" of the Likud and the "right" of Labor. And, by this move, will probably become extinct after the October 2013 election.