LibermanFlash 90

Outgoing Defense Minister Avigdor Liberman's gamble appears to be paying off.

On Wednesday, Liberman suddenly resigned as defense minister. In a dramatic press conference, Liberman said that a recent cease-fire with Hamas was "a capitulation to terror" and called for new elections "as soon as possible".

A full day after Liberman said he would leave the Defense Ministry, a new survey in the Russia-language newspaper Newsru found that Yisrael Beytenu's support is rising among the faction's Russian-speaking base.

According to the survey, 81% said that they agreed with Liberman that the cease-fire was a "capitulation to terrorism" and 55% said that they supported Liberman's decision to leave the coalition.

Meanwhile, 30% of the 5,472 respondents said that they want Liberman to be Israel's next prime minister, with Netanyahu trailing at only 15%. A Newsru poll last month, however, found Netanyahu the leading choice to be prime minister with 37% of the vote with Liberman far behind at 13%.

While last month's survey found the Likud remaining the most popular faction among Russian-speakers, with 27% support, Yisrael Beytenu has now surpassed the ruling Likud party with 45.5%.

The poll is good news for Liberman, as it shows that his Yisrael Beytenu faction's popularity is growing among its Russian-speaking base.