Only 7% Voted in Jerusalem by 1pm

Low voter turnout could mean surprise victories. Hareidi, Arab voter turnout surprisingly high.

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Local elections
Local elections
Flash 90

Interior Minister Gideon Saar reported Tuesday morning that voter turnout in the nation's largest cities is low, but that it is relatively high in the Arab sector. As of 11am, only 4% of eligible voters had come out to cast their ballots, although by the afternoon that figure had risen slightly to 7%.

At Abu Ghosh, an Arab town west of Jerusalem, over 30% of voters had gone to the polls. In most of the Arab communities, turnout was over 20%.

In the large cities, Saar said, voter turnout was very low. In Tel Aviv, only 6% had turned out to vote as of 11am.

At the hareidi city of Elad, by contrast, 25% had voted.

On the nationwide level, 9% of people with the right to vote had voted by 11:00. The calculation does not include 17 locations for which numbers were not available. 

Low voter turnout could bring about upset victories if candidates who were losing in the polls manage to bring more of their voters to the ballots than their competitors do. Secular Jerusalemites blamed low turnout for the election of a hareidi mayor, Uri Lupolianski, in 2003, for the first time in the city's history.