Four polls predicted Israel's Opposition Leader and former prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu would come within a single seat of an outright majority in his bid to return to power in Israel’s upcoming election next week.
Netanyahu's quest for a comeback has been aided by an alliance between his Likud party and the far-right Religious Zionism group.
One Thursday poll by Kan public broadcaster and three Friday polls by Maariv, Channel 12 News, and Channel 13 News all showed Netanyahu’s bloc of four parties winning 60 of the Israeli parliament’s 120 seats in Tuesday's vote.
If the upcoming election – Israel’s fifth in less than four years – would result in deadlock, it could mean that the Jewish state would go to the polls again within months.
Israel has been caught in an election cycle since 2019, the year Netanyahu was charged with bribery, fraud, and breach of trust in cases he has called a “rigged” political witch-hunt. After four inconclusive votes, Israel’s longest-serving leader was ousted in June 2021 by a coalition of liberal, rightist, and Arab parties, now led by Prime Minister Yair Lapid.
Netanyahu allied with ultra-nationalist firebrand lawmaker Itamar Ben-Gvir, whose inclusion in government would test Israel’s foreign relations and could upset Western allies, as well as Palestinians and Arab countries.
The polls predicted the current coalition winning 56 seats, and the Arab-led Hadash-Ta’al list getting four seats.
Reprinted with permission from i24NEWS.