Poll: Israelis Blame Netanyahu for Financial Woes

Poll gives Lapid good news, indicating he is held less to blame for weakening finances, as average poll results of last week released.

Ari Yashar ,

Yair Lapid, Binyamin Netanyahu
Yair Lapid, Binyamin Netanyahu
Marc Israel Sellem/POOL/Flash 90

A poll published Saturday night on Channel 10's "Hamateh Hamerkazi" program found that respondents place responsibility for Israel's weakening financial situation on Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu more than on former Finance Minister Yair Lapid (Yesh Atid).

The poll, conducted by members of the program, found that 46% held Netanyahu responsible for the financial situation, followed by 29% placing the responsibility on Lapid, with 18% holding other sources responsible.

The results placing blame on Netanyahu appear to be good news for Lapid, who has been widely criticized for mishandling Israeli finances during his term in office.

It also confirms growing dissatisfaction with Netanyahu seen in a poll last Thursday, which paradoxically found most Israelis don't want to see him return as prime minister but at the same time thought he was the best of all the candidates for the post.

Another question asked in the survey was whether respondents anticipate a change in rule, which would see Likud out. The results showed 52% felt there was a moderate chance of a change, 33% said there is a weak chance, and only 15% said there was a high chance of a change.

Also featured in the program were results showing the average of polls conducted by HaaretzGlobes and Maariv over the last week.

According to the average results, Likud and Labor-Hatnua are neck and neck at 22 mandates apiece. Jewish Home can expect 16 seats, while Moshe Kahlon's new Kulanu is slated for ten, as is Yesh Atid.

Yisrael Beytenu got eight seats, the hareidi United Torah Judaism party would get seven, and the radical leftist Meretz party six. United Arab List would get six, followed by Shas at five and Hadash at five.

United Arab List and Hadash announced Saturday that they will run in a joint Arab list along with the Arab ultra-nationalist party, which has been appraised at getting around 11 seats.

Former Shas chairperson Eli Yishai's new party, originally called Yachad but now apparently running as Ha'am Itanu (The People Are With Us) was only given two seats by the average poll, meaning it would not pass the vote threshold to make it into the Knesset. However, a Haaretz poll showed it would gain enough seats to make the threshold cutoff, and several polls indicate it would split Shas's Knesset strength in half.

Not being represented in any of the polls until now are the various smaller parties running for election, including the religious nationalist Otzma Yehudit party, which this week is to hold a large event officially kicking off its campaign.