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250,000 ‘Wasted’ Votes in 2013 Elections

Nearly a quarter of a million voters chose parties that did not make it into the Knesset this time around.
By Chana Ya'ar
First Publish: 1/23/2013, 11:52 AM

Elections 2013
Elections 2013
Israel news photo: Ben Bresky

Nearly a quarter of a million voters chose parties that did not make it into the Knesset this time around.

The ‘Otzma L’Yisrael’ party (Strong Israel) came closest to reaching its goal, but failed to pass the 2 percent threshold needed to enter the parliament. The party, led by MK Michael Ben Ari, earned 61,825 votes, and lacked the 15,000 more needed to break the barrier.

The ‘Am Shalem’ party was next, with 42,095 mandates, also lacking enough to enter the Knesset.

Both were followed by several other, smaller new parties, all of which made poor showings and had no chance of entering. 

Among them were Rabbi Amnon Yitzchak’s ‘Koach L’Hashpiah’ (Power to Influence)  party, with 26,744 votes; ‘Eretz Hadasha’ (New Land) with 26,331 votes; and the ‘Calcala’ (Economy) party, which won only 1,881 votes despite publicity for its controversial ads and use of celebrities.

The final votes from Tuesday’s national election will be counted beginning today (Wednesday) in the evening. When the tally is completed, the threshold for entering the Knesset is expected to be set at 76,100, according to the Central Elections Committee.

At present, the threshold is being set at two percent of the total number of votes, which are still being tallied due to the submission from polls among IDF soldiers in the field.