The idea of uniting the Likud and Yisrael Beitenu is over, and the two parties will run separate lists in the next elections. The latest survey by the Rafi Smith Institute for "Globes" found that if elections were held now, the combined Likud-Yisrael Beitenu would win 31 Knesset seats, the same as it holds in the current Knesset, but that if they ran separately, the Likud would win 26 Knesset seats and Yisrael Beitenu would win nine.
More than just proving that a divorce is worth more than unity, it also shows that Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, Yisrael Beitenu chairman MK Avigdor Liberman, and consultant Arthur Finkelstein were wrong. It would have been better to run separately. On the other hand, were it not for the joint list, Netanyahu might not now be prime minister. We'll never know.
The poll also shows that separate lists by the Likud and Yisrael Beitenu would change the make-up of the Knesset. It shows that if the two parties were to run separately, the Likud would win seats at the expense of Minister of Finance Yair Lapid's Yesh Atid, Minister of the Economy Naftali Bennett's Habayit Hayehudi, and Shas.
Were elections held now, Yesh Atid would win 18 Knesset seats if the Likud and Yisrael Beitenu were to run together, and 17 if they were to run separately. Yesh Atid has 19 seats in the current Knesset. Habayit Hayehudi would win 13 seats if Likud and Yisrael Beitenu were to run together and 11 seats if they were to run separately. It has 12 seats in the current Knesset. Shas would win nine seats if Likud and Yisrael Beitenu were to run together and eight seats if they were to run separately. It has 11 seats in the current Knesset.
A Likud-Yisrael Beitenu divorce has no effect on the other parties. The poll finds Labor would win 17 seats in any case, two more than it currently has, while Meretz would increase its seats from the current six to nine, and United Torah Judaism would be unchanged at nine seats. Minister of Justice Tzipi Livni's Hatnua would win three seats, half its current strength, and Kadima is unchanged at two seats. The Arab parties would win 11 seats altogether, the same as their current strength.
Published by Globes [online], Israel business news - www.globes-online.com - on June 27, 2013
© Copyright of Globes Publisher Itonut (1983) Ltd. 2013