72% believe government failed against terror wave

Warning signs for Likud, Zionist Union as latest poll shows Israelis frustrated with status quo.

David Rosenberg ,

Cabinet meeting (archive)
Cabinet meeting (archive)
Flash 90

Israelis are fed up with the country’s political leadership and would dramatically change the composition of the Knesset if elections were held today, says a new Teleseker TNS poll.

While roughly half of the public felt incumbent Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu was best suited for the position ahead of the 2015 election, only 23% gave that response in this week’s poll. Yesh Atid chief Yair Lapid came in second with 15%, compared to 9% for former Defense Minister Moshe Yaalon but only 5% for Zionist Union chairman Isaac Herzog. A full third of respondents did not know who was best suited for to be Prime Minister.

Israelis gave the government poor marks on both the economy and its handling of the recent terror wave. Only 19% said they were satisfied with the government’s economic policy, while 78% said they were dissatisfied.

Respondents were only slightly more positive on the government’s attempts to rein in terrorism, with 23% saying they were satisfied by the government’s handling of terror, compared to 72% who were not.

If elections were held today, the study revealed, Israel’s two largest parties would suffer significant losses.

The Likud, which won 30 seats in 2015, would drop to 22 seats. But Isaac Herzog’s Zionist Union would suffer catastrophic losses, falling to just 9 seats from 24.

The primary beneficiary of the decline of Israel’s major parties is Yesh Atid, which would surge to 20 mandates from the 11 it currently holds, exceeding the 19 it won in 2013.

The Jewish Home would rise from 8 to 13 seats, while Defense Minister Avigdor Liberman’s Yisrael Beytenu would grow from 6 mandates to 9.

A new centrist party headed by former Defense Minister Moshe Yaalon and ex-Prime Minister Ehud Barak would win 10 seats.

Moshe Kahlon’s Kulanu party continues to decline, falling in this latest poll from 10 seats won in 2015 to just 6.

Shas would drop one seat, from 7 to 6. The other haredi party, United Torah Judaism, would rise by one, winning 7 seats.

Meretz and the Joint List party would both remain stable, with 5 and 13 seats respectively.