An absolute majority of Israelis believe that Opposition Leader Benjamin Netanyahu should resign as leader of the Likud if the right-wing bloc fails to break the Knesset deadlock in next week’s election and emerge with a 61-seat majority, a new poll shows.
According to the poll, which was conducted by Geocartography just days before the November 1st election, 51% of Israelis say Netanyahu must step aside as chairman of the Knesset’s largest party if he and the parties allied with him fail to win an outright majority in the Knesset.
Israelis have gone to the polls four times since Netanyahu’s government collapsed in late 2018, with two elections in 2019 failing to offer a clear path to either Netanyahu or Benny Gantz to form a government.
A third election, held in March 2020, led to another deadlocked Knesset, and the formation of a unity government headed by Netanyahu and Gantz.
That coalition fell apart after less than a year in power, leading to a fourth vote in 2021, resulting in yet another deadlocked Knesset and short-lived unity government, this time headed by Naftali Bennett and Yair Lapid.
Just 34% of Israelis say it is not incumbent on Netanyahu to step aside should he fail to reach an outright majority in the fifth round of voting, set for next Tuesday.
A second poll, conducted by Panels Politics and published Friday morning by Ma’ariv, found that less than half (47%) of eligible Arab voters are certain they will turnout for next week’s election, potentially imperiling all three major Arab lists for the Knesset, and even the Labor party.
The poll found that if new elections were held today, three factions, including the Labor party, the United Arab List (Ra’am), and Hadash-Ta’al would barely cross the 3.25% electoral threshold, with just four seats apiece.
A weak turnout in the Arab sector could potentially leave any of the three factions out of the next Knesset.
A fourth faction, the Arab nationalist Balad party, again failed to cross the threshold, receiving just 1.8% of the vote, up from 1.4% in last Friday’s poll.
The Meretz faction outperformed Labor in the poll with five seats, while Yesh Atid rose from 23 seats in last week’s poll to 25 seats. The National Unity party of Defense Minister Benny Gantz held steady at 12 seats.
Yisrael Beytenu tumbled one seat to six mandates, while the Jewish Home remains below the 3.25% electoral threshold with 2.1%, up from 1.8% last week.
The Likud retained its 31 seats from last week’s poll, while the Religious Zionist Party held steady at 14 seats.
Among the haredi factions, Shas rose one seat to nine mandates, while United Torah Judaism slipped one seat, to six.