Day After Elections, Coalition Building Begins for Netanyahu

January 23, 2013 9:29 am 0 comments

Israeli Knesset (parliament). Photo: wiki commons.

With the election behind him, the real difficulties begin for Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu as he tries to build a broad coalition, a task almost surely to be delegated to him by President Shimon Peres.

As he has done in the past, Netanyahu may seek first to partner with the right-wing and ultra-Orthodox parties. Shas and United Torah Judaism seem Netanyahu’s “natural” partners, and both have already signaled they are eager to join his coalition. The prime minister also reportedly expressed his willingness to invite them to build a government together, offering to open coalition talks with Shas’s Eli Yishai on Thursday.

But a right-wing coalition would  leave Likud-Beiteinu, the Jewish Home party (11 seats), Shas (11 or 12 seats) and United Torah Judaism (7 seats) with just 60-61 seats — a tiny majority, if that, in the 120-seat Knesset. Aside from it’s tenuous position of power, it would also be unlikely that a coalition of purely right-leaning members would be welcomed by the international community.

Netanyahu, however, signaled Tuesday that he wants to form a broad coalition, one that would include Yair Lapid’s Yesh Atid, whom he called shortly after election results were in. This would be dependent on Lapid, who is unlikely to join a coalition that includes both of the ultra-Orthodox parties. Also, Lapid has a firm stance on the universal draft. Any coalition that would include Shas and especially UTJ would be unlikely to agree to push through a law that would allow for Haredim to be drafted.

Another option, noted over at the Times of Israel, is Likud-Beiteinu partnering with Yesh Atid and Jewish Home. Again, this would mean Netanyahu having to survive on a slim majority of 61 seats, but it would be a majority devoid of Haredi parties, meaning the government would be able to finally legislate for universal conscription. Both Jewish Home chief Naftali Bennett and Lapid have voiced their willingness to join a government led by Netanyahu. On Wednesday morning Bennett told Ynet, “There is a real chance to form a government that will work towards true equal share of the burden.”

If Tzipi Livni’s Hatnua were to join as well, a stable center-right government with 67 seats could emerge. Sources at Hatnua told Ynet that the issue of a universal draft will be one of the party’s terms to joining the coalition. Kadima might also join (if it holds on to its projected 2 seats). But Livni would want to take steps to energize talks with the Palestinians; Netanyahu might not.

Whatever the case may be, Likud-Beiteinu has indicated that it is likely that the next government will be vastly different from the outgoing one. With 53 new MKs, they’re probably right.  Yisrael Beiteinu chairman Avigdor Lieberman posted a message on his Facebook page which read, “We’ll form the next government headed by Benjamin Netanyahu,” but the former foreign minister sounded a somewhat conciliatory tone.

“We shall continue to lead Israel with responsibility and security. The elections force the next government to focus on internal matters, and mainly equal share of the burden, changing the form of government and affordable housing. On the diplomatic level, if the Palestinians show they are willing to meet and restart negotiations we would be happy to meet with them, with no preconditions.”

Leave a Reply

Please note: comments may be published in the Algemeiner print edition.


Current day month ye@r *

More...

  • Education Why We Should Invest in Jewish Children

    Why We Should Invest in Jewish Children

    JNS.org – My wife Suzy and I will never forget our wedding day. It was not just the uplifting ceremony and beautiful party that left an indelible mark. Some life-altering advice that we received from one of our guests informed and shaped our lives from that day forward. My high school teacher, Rabbi Moshe Yagid, pulled us aside just before the chuppah and challenged us to choose one mitzvah that would be the foundation of our marriage and our lives. He explained [...]

    Read more →
  • Jewish Identity Sports LeBron James’ New Coach Shaped by Summer on Kibbutz and Jewish ‘Life Lessons’

    LeBron James’ New Coach Shaped by Summer on Kibbutz and Jewish ‘Life Lessons’

    JNS.org – Influenced by his Jewish upbringing and a summer on a kibbutz, basketball coach David Blatt is embarking on his highest-profile challenge yet: coaching LeBron James, the four-time National Basketball Association (NBA) Most Valuable Player who has made waves for returning to his hometown Cleveland Cavaliers. After guiding Israel’s storied Maccabi Tel Aviv basketball franchise to its 51st Israeli league championship and 6th Euroleague title this past season, Blatt landed the Cavaliers head-coaching job in June. Just weeks later, [...]

    Read more →
  • Food Jewish Identity Young Syrian Jewish Restauranteur Continues a Family Legacy

    Young Syrian Jewish Restauranteur Continues a Family Legacy

    JNS.org – At the turn of the century, a young Jewish immigrant arrived in New York. So begins the history of many American Jewish families. It is 27-year-old Albert Allaham’s story, too, with a few unusual twists. Albert’s “century” is the 21st—he arrived almost 100 years after the massive waves of European Jewish immigration. Rather than coming from a small town along the Danube river, his shtetl was Damascus. His first American business was not a pushcart on the Lower East [...]

    Read more →
  • Book Reviews Jewish Identity A Holistic Look at the Rebbe’s Life and Career (REVIEW)

    A Holistic Look at the Rebbe’s Life and Career (REVIEW)

    Did you know that in the entire Bible, only one birthday is mentioned and it is that of Pharaoh? And did you know that according to some scientists, by accepting Einstein’s Theory of General Relativity, it is impossible to prove or disprove that the sun is the gravitational center of our solar system? In his new book, REBBE, best-selling author Joseph Telushkin reveals many surprising and sometimes shocking details as he chronicles the life and teachings of the charismatic Rabbi [...]

    Read more →
  • Food Mitzvos New Jerusalem Eatery’s Uniform Pricing Seeks to ‘Help People Make It’

    New Jerusalem Eatery’s Uniform Pricing Seeks to ‘Help People Make It’

    JNS.org – Omelet sandwich: 5 shekels. Iced coffee: 5 shekels. Tuna sandwich: 5 shekels. Fresh-squeezed orange juice: 5 shekels. Cheese bureka: 5 shekels. There’s plenty more on the Cofizz menu, but you get the idea. Dani Mizrahi and Amir Amshalm, two Israeli men in their early 30s, asked themselves: Why not launch a take-out food joint in busy neighborhoods around Jerusalem where everything—and that means everything—goes for five shekels, or about $1.50. They’d seen the concept take off in Tel Aviv, where [...]

    Read more →
  • Arts and Culture Israel New Primetime Drama ‘Tyrant’ Filmed Entirely in Israel (VIDEO)

    New Primetime Drama ‘Tyrant’ Filmed Entirely in Israel (VIDEO)

    The new FX Network drama Tyrant was shot entirely in Israel, just 10 miles north of Tel Aviv, Bloomberg News reported last Tuesday. Tyrant follows the life of an Arab dictator’s second son Barry, played by Adam Rayner, who reluctantly returns home to the Middle Eastern nation of his birth to join the family business away from his suburban life in America. The elaborate set production for the primetime drama included a crew of 300 and a reported cost of over $3 million [...]

    Read more →
  • Arts and Culture US & Canada Supermodel: Jewish Mothers Are Constantly Trying to Set Me Up With Their Sons

    Supermodel: Jewish Mothers Are Constantly Trying to Set Me Up With Their Sons

    Skokie, Il-born 25-year-old Erin Heatherton (Erin Heather Bubley) is rocking the modeling world. And in a new interview accompanying a cover spread for Miami’s Ocean Drive magazine, she says Jewish moms are “constantly trying to set her up with their sons.” Imagine that – who would have thought? “The moms, they’re doing what they do. It doesn’t matter what country they live in, what city – grandmothers, too,” she admitted. “But I’m probably going to do that too one day.” Heatherton was [...]

    Read more →
  • Education Israel First Ever: Turkish Academics to Visit Israel Holocaust Museum for Seminar

    First Ever: Turkish Academics to Visit Israel Holocaust Museum for Seminar

    Some 15 Turkish university professors and lecturers will take part in a first of its kind seminar at Holocaust museum Yad Vashem’s International School for Holocaust Studies starting next week. The trip is especially significant as Holocaust denial is rampant in the Arab world. A Palestinian professor was recently forced to resign after he led a trip to the Nazi extermination camp Auschwitz. Participants in the week-long program at Yad Vashem will experience in-depth tours of the museum’s archives and [...]

    Read more →



Sign up now to receive our regular news briefs.