Poll: Gideon Sa'ar top contender to replace Netanyahu

The poll also showed no broad public support for a unity government headed by the Prime Minister

Arutz Sheva Staff ,

Gideon Sa'ar
Gideon Sa'ar
Kobi Richter/TPS

About half of the Israeli public opposes the establishment of a unity government led by Binyamin Netanyahu - and only 42% support it - according to a Walla! poll and a representative national sample taken for the first time since the elections.

68% of those who voted center-left in the last election oppose the establishment of a unity government of Blue and White and Likud led by Netanyahu and only 26% support the idea.

On the other side of the map - among right-wing voters - the opposite is true. A majority of 54% support the establishment of a unity government headed by Netanyahu, while 41% said they were opposed.

Among the entire public, the gap between Netanyahu and MK Gideon Sa'ar is slight. In response to the question of who is most suitable to head Likud, 35% replied that Netanyahu is suitable compared to 29% who said that Sa'ar is more suitable. Among right-wing voters, Netanyahu's lead is much larger, with the prime minister receiving 54% of the votes versus 24% for Sa'ar.

Sa'ar, who received support in the double-digits, leads other senior Likud figures who are considered leadership candidates by a large gap. Yuli Edelstein received 5%, Gilad Erdan only 2% and Israel Katz only 1% - both in the general public and among those who define themselves as a right-wing voters.

Among center-left voters, Sa'ar is much more popular than Netanyahu. 41% think he is the most suitable candidate to head Likud, while only 8% think Netanyahu is the most suitable candidate.

The poll also examined what the distribution of Knesset seats in elections would be if Likud was headed by Sa'ar instead of Netanyahu. The results show that while Likud would shrink dramatically and become much smaller in size than Blue and White, the seats would remain with the right-wing haredi bloc which would maintain its power with 56 seats.

If Sa'ar were to head Likud and the elections take place today, Likud would receive only 26 mandates - versus the 32 it received in the previous elections - but the votes would remain within the right-wing bloc. Yamina would receive 12 mandates (versus its current 7), Shas would receive 10 mandates (versus its current nine), and UTJ would receive eight mandates (versus its current seven).