Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu would be reelected – again – if Knesset elections were held this year for a second time, a new poll shows.
With coalition talks stalled due to a dispute between haredi lawmakers and Yisrael Beytenu over the future of the draft deferment program for yeshiva students, the Likud is pushing to dissolve the 21st Knesset less than two months after it was elected.
The Knesset is expected to hold the initial vote on a measure to dissolve the Knesset Monday, with a final vote slated for Wednesday – the deadline for Netanyahu to form a new government.
According to a new poll conducted by Panels Politics on behalf of Maariv, Netanyahu would benefit from new elections, which would increase the right-wing - haredi bloc’s margin in the Knesset from 65 seats to 68, while the left-wing – Arab bloc would fall from 55 to 52 mandates.
The Likud itself would retain the 35 seats it won in April, while the center-left Blue and White party would fall from 35 to 34 seats.
The haredi factions Shas and United Torah Judaism would retain their eight seats each, while the Union of Right-Wing Parties would rise from five seats to six. Yisrael Beytenu would also rise from five seats to six.
The New Right party of Naftali Bennett and Ayelet Shaked would pass the electoral threshold this time around, winning five seats, while the Kulanu faction of Finance Minister Moshe Kahlon would not.
With 68 mandates for the right-wing – haredi bloc, Netanyahu would no longer be dependent on Yisrael Beytenu to form a majority coalition of 61 MKs.
On the left, the Labor party would retain its current six mandates, while Meretz would gain one seat, rising to five. The joint ticket of the Arab parties Hadash and Ta’al would gain one seat, rising to seven mandates, while the second Arab joint ticket of Balad and the United Arab List would fail to cross the threshold.