MK Yitzchak Herzog is headed towards victory in the race for the leadership of the Labor party. As of 6:50 a.m., with more than 50% of the ballots having been counted, Herzog was leading with 56% of the votes over incumbent MK Shelly Yechimovich.
The 125 polls which allowed Labor members to choose between Yechimovich and Herzog closed at 10:00 p.m. on Thursday evening. The party said 52.73 percent of its eligible voters took part in the balloting. Both the headquarters of Yechimovich and Herzog predicted as polls closed that, due to the relatively low voter turnout, the race will be decided by a small margin.
Final results are expected sometime Friday morning.
Earlier on Thursday in a post on her Facebook page, Yechimovich encouraged party members to go out and vote.
"I'm not satisfied with your ‘liking’ this post and asking you to go now and vote for me,” she wrote. “A low voter turnout is not good for democracy and not good for us, it is only good for those with the big money, and not for our free and ideological public.”
Herzog, meanwhile, made it clear that, despite some media reports, he will not rush to join Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu’s coalition if he wins the party leadership.
“I see the Labor party headed by me leading a large bloc of center-left parties that challenge the right and replace the government," Herzog declared in an interview on Army Radio, adding, “The rest is nothing but a spin.”