Coalition consultations to begin next week

President Rivlin to begin consultations for formation of government next week. Netanyahu expected to receive mandate to form government.

Hezki Baruch ,

Rivlin at election committee
Rivlin at election committee
Mark Neiman, GPO

Israeli President Reuven Rivlin visited the Knesset Wednesday, as the ballot count continues following Tuesday’s general election.

On behalf of the citizens of Israel, the president thanked all those working to count the votes and to the members of the committee who have worked tirelessly over the last few months to ensure free and fair elections, saying: “you are the most professional and dedicated expression of how democracy works in Israel. Thanks to each one of you, we can be absolutely confident that the will of the people is given its most accurate expression, and that the right of the people to fair elections and accurate and verified information is upheld. Thank you all for your wonderful work. I hope that soon you will be able to return to your normal daily lives, until the next time.”

During his visit, President Rivlin met with the chairman of the Israeli Elections Committee, Justice Hanan Melcer. The two discussed the election results and the formation of a new government.

President Rivlin and Melcer agreed that the president would begin consultations with party leaders next week, to determine which candidate to task with forming the next coalition government.

Party leaders will meet with the president at his official state residence next week, though no final date for the consultations has been set. The president is expected to reach an agreement with Melcer regarding the exact timing of the consultations.

Following Israeli Knesset elections, the president must assign the task of forming the next government to the candidate he or she believes will be most likely to be able to form a majority coalition of at least 61 MKs.

The president typically meets with party leaders for consultations, receiving their recommendations for the premiership. If one candidate reaches the necessary 61 MKs, the president offers that candidate the opportunity to form the next government.

Once the president has done this, the chosen candidate has 28 days, according to Basic Law: The Government, to form a new government for Israel. If required, the president is able to give an extension of up to an additional 14 days.

The Likud and Blue and White are both projected to win 35 seats, yet the Likud is widely expected to form the next government, given the 10-seat advantage projected for the right-wing – religious bloc, which is likely to win 65 seats.

In a first, President Rivlin’s consultations with party leaders are slated to be broadcast live. Rivlin’s office announced that the meetings will be live streamed on a number of platforms, in the name of transparency.