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TIMES OF ISRAEL POLLING 2019 Empty Re: TIMES OF ISRAEL POLLING 2019

Post  Admin on Thu 11 Apr 2019, 5:51 pm

Israeli Election: A Vote of No Confidence in the Media
BY SIMON PLOSKER  APRIL 11, 2019
https://honestreporting.com/israeli-election-a-vote-of-no-confidence-in-the-media/
A woman holds her baby as she casts her ballot at a voting station in Jerusalem, during the Knesset Elections, on April 9, 2019. Photo by Yonatan Sindel/Flash90
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Given the enormous amount of focus that Israel receives in the foreign press, it’s hardly surprising that plenty has been written in the aftermath of what appears to be a Benjamin Netanyahu victory in the just completed Israeli election.

HonestReporting does not endorse any political party within Israel. We do, however, have the benefit of being on the ground, working and living in Israel and actually taking part in the elections.

But what about all of those foreign media outlets that are relying on their own journalists or external commentators for the “expert” analysis in order to decode what is a particularly complex democratic exercise with uncertain and fluid outcomes?

The extremist “experts”
Surely, the most obvious and even representative commentators and analysts to write about an Israeli election would be … Israelis?

Think again.

Why bother when you can trot out anti-Israel extremists to give their nasty agenda-driven analyses?

Saree Makdisi (Credit: YouTube/Thomas Miller)
Take the LA Times, which gives a platform to Saree Makdisi, a UCLA professor with a track record of falsely accusing Israel of apartheid, maliciously claiming that Israel deliberately kills Palestinian children, urging an academic boycott of Israel, and calling for Israel to be dismantled as the Jewish state – effectively for its destruction. We have previously called him out for questioning why anyone should recognize Israel’s right to exist, accusing Israel of collective punishment in Gaza, and claiming that anti-Israel campus activists are the victims of a campaign of intimidation.

And it’s more of the same in his latest screed where he concludes that “The takeaway from Israel’s election is simple: The two-state solution is dead. What remains is a single racist state whose beneficiaries are satisfied with their government.”

It’s hard to imagine that it was actual Israelis who voted because, for some media, it’s only about one thing – the Palestinians. And who better to comment on the elections for The Independent than Ben White?

Ben White has a long standing reputation as an obsessive anti-Israel extremist. The author of “Israeli Apartheid: A Beginner’s Guide,” White has claimed “I do not consider myself an anti-Semite, yet I can also understand why some are.” He has made racist statements and supports racist statements of others. White advocates for a one-state solution and the end of Israel as a Jewish state.

So no surprise when White’s contribution to the discussion is to question Israel’s very democracy:

It is truly extraordinary that Israel continues, with a straight face, to declare itself “the only democracy in the Middle East”, and even more extraordinary that anyone takes such a claim seriously.

That The Independent considers him to be a credible voice on Israeli elections or anything else for that matter, speaks volumes about that media outlet.

It’s all about the Palestinians
While Israeli voters went to the polls to consider a huge range of issues, for many media, this election is seen almost solely through the prism of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

So, again in The Independent, for Patrick Cockburn it’s all about Netanyahu’s conservative approach to military action: “Israeli voters like leaders who talk tough, but not those who get them engaged in long or, as is the more common experience, inconclusive wars.”

No wonder The Independent’s readership has such a narrow view of what makes Israel and Israelis tick.

Plenty of commentary came from writers sitting thousands of miles away from the scene. But what about the many reporters who parachuted into Israel purely to cover the elections.

The Jerusalem Post’s chief political correspondent and analyst Gil Hoffman stated in reference to the likely criminal indictments facing Netanyahu:

Foreign press who flew in to cover the election said they do not understand why Israelis elected Netanyahu if he is facing such serious allegations.

All journalists could learn something from the mea culpa that followed US President Donald Trump’s election where many media admitted that they had failed to read the US public accurately. This was due to a tendency to focus on urban populations in major East and West Coast cities at the expense of middle America.

In a similar vein, many journalists in Israel, particularly non-Hebrew speakers rarely get to interact with the large numbers of Israelis who don’t live in Jerusalem, Tel Aviv or other regional hot spots. The general mood of a country cannot be accurately gauged by those media who are hearing the conversation solely in English or who aren’t engaging with all parts of Israel’s incredibly diverse population.

Who knows best? Not the Israelis
The Independent’s editorial refers to Netanyahu as:

arguably the worst leader Israel has ever had the misfortune to be lumbered with.

That Israelis have re-elected Netanyahu for five terms, four of them consecutive, would seem to indicate that Israelis disagree. The Independent’s attitude is incredibly condescending towards Israelis and their abilities to judge their own leadership.

This attitude of ‘we know better than Israelis’ is hilariously addressed by the Preoccupied Territory website, which satirizes New York Times columnist Roger Cohen:

I’m Not Elitist – I Just Know Better Than You All What’s Good for You
My various columns over the years in which I showcase my upper-middle-class, translatlantic, more-educated-than-thou, and secular-but-culturally-Jewish-as-long-as-it-fits-my-politics-and-lifestyle outlook may have conveyed the wrong idea to many readers as to my guiding assumptions. Therefore let me state with no pretense: please view me not as one who looks down on most others and dismisses their ideas as mistaken, if not outright dangerous; instead please view me as someone who, by dint of his superior education, variety of experience, and clear thinking, simply knows more than your pathetic underclass brains could ever grasp, and my opinions must therefore hold more sway in the world than yours.

Nowhere does this important message carry more validity than in my pontificating about Israel.

Enough said.

You can read the full satire here.

A work of fiction
Nowhere is the danger of relying on an external commentator more evident than in Canada’s Globe and Mail. Erna Paris is an author. Here, referring to the makeup of the likely next Israeli government, she comes up with a work of fiction:

The new entity includes Otzma Yehudit (Jewish Power), an offspring of Kach, the party of the late Meir Kahane, which was outlawed in Israel in 1994 for inciting racism, and designated a terrorist organization in both the United States and Canada. Jewish Power advocates the annexation of the occupied West Bank without offering Israeli citizenship to its 2.8 million Palestinian residents, a move that would create a state like South Africa under apartheid. The party also promotes the deportation of “Arab extremists,” dependent upon an undefined “loyalty test.”

In catapulting Jewish Power to centre stage and becoming beholden to its politics, Mr. Netanyahu may have overstepped and altered the political status quo.

While Paris is entitled to bemoan the existence of the far-right Jewish Power, it’s quite another to claim that Netanyahu has ‘catapulted it to center stage’ and has ‘become beholden to its politics.’

Had Paris actually looked properly at the election results, she would see that no members of Jewish Power have even been elected to the Knesset. The Union of Right Wing Parties that Jewish Power ran under did not win enough seats to put the highest Jewish Power candidate into the parliament.

So much for expert analysis.

This wasn’t the only attempt to preemptively brand Israel’s yet to be formed coalition government as extremist. See here how the Huffington Post’s headline created hysteria.
View image on Twitter

HonestReporting
✔️
@HonestReporting
 This is the front page of the @HuffPo. "Israel votes extreme", screams the hysterical headline.

No, it did not. With Likud and Blue and White winning the bulk of the votes, a clear majority of Israelis actually voted for center-left to center-right.

50
1:56 PM - Apr 10, 2019
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Ultimately, it’s clear that most of the mainstream western media were, some more overtly than others, hoping for a Netanyahu defeat. The tone of some of the reporting is reflective of that attitude as is the inability of some journalists and media outlets to process how, despite everything, Netanyhu has won an election again.

So when you read a commentary in your local media outlet about the Israeli election, take a moment to consider whether you are being given a full and informed picture.

New Right urges recount as it seems to fall just short of winning Knesset seats
URWP joins demand as Central Elections Committee releases final results but says is reviewing the tally process; New Right party sources allege elections ‘stolen from right wing’
By MICHAEL BACHNER and TOI STAFF
Today, 12:01 pm  3
https://www.timesofisrael.com/new-right-demands-recount-after-party-appears-not-to-cross-knesset-threshold/?
Justice Minister Ayelet Shaked and Education Minister Naftali Bennett hold a press conference of the New Right Political party, in Tel Aviv on March 17, 2019. (Flash90)
Justice Minister Ayelet Shaked and Education Minister Naftali Bennett hold a press conference of the New Right Political party, in Tel Aviv on March 17, 2019. (Flash90)
The New Right party on Thursday said it would demand a recount of its votes as it emerged that it was apparently just short of entering the Knesset, after all votes were tallied but with a review of the vote-count process underway.

Early Thursday, the Central Elections Committee was counting the final 265,000 ballots from soldiers, diplomats, medical staff and patients in hospitals, prisoners and disabled people (3,940 special stations were accessible to voters with disabilities), representing about six percent of the total number of ballots cast in the election.

After the regular votes were counted, the New Right party of Education Minister Naftali Bennett and Justice Minister Ayelet Shaked narrowly failed to enter the Knesset, garnering just 3.14% of the vote, some 4,300 votes under the 3.25% electoral threshold.

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After the extra votes were counted, the party crept up to 3.22%, just 0.03% short of its target that would lift it from zero seats to four seats. Officials said the party was 1,380 votes short of the threshold.


Officials count the remaining ballots from soldiers and absentees at the Knesset in Jerusalem, a day after the general elections, April 10, 2019. (Noam Revkin Fenton/Flash90)
Due to a bug in the Central Elections Committee website, the displayed data appeared at first to indicate that New Right was just above the threshold with 3.26%, but officials said that was a mistake.

The Central Elections Committee said Thursday morning that the tally had ended, but that the official results would only be released later after a strict review of the process due to the close results.

New Right said it would demand a recount of the ballots, with party sources alleging that “very strange things are happening at the Central Elections Committee, someone is stealing the elections from the right wing.” They said party observers had not been allowed to monitor the process.

“We are optimistic,” Shaked told the Ynet website outside her home. “The reports have been good. We need to wait for the final results.”

Bennett earlier told reporters: “I’m praying to God and fighting for every vote.”


National Union MK Bezalel Smotrich at the Supreme Court in Jerusalem on March 27, 2019. (Yonatan Sindel/Flash90)
Bezalel Smotrich, No. 2 on the Union of Right-Wing Parties (URWP) slate — which Bennett and Shaked left to form New Right — joined the recount demand, saying that “there is a very bad smell here of a purposeful attempt to make right-wing Knesset seats disappear and we shouldn’t let that happen.”

But URWP leader Rafi Peretz signaled a different approach, saying he has “full trust” in the Elections Committee and that the party would “responsibly” await its official announcement.

New Right and URWP are reportedly planning to join forces in determining coalition demands from Netanyahu if the former party crosses the threshold.

The tally of the last batch of votes seemed to indicated that the Arab party Ra’am-Balad was safely over the threshold, though it slipped from 3.45% to 3.38%.

It also led to a minor-looking but significant change in the Knesset makeup, with the left-wing Meretz party going up from four to five seats at the expense of the ultra-Orthodox United Torah Judaism, which was bumped down from eight to seven.


Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu waves to supporters after polls for elections closed in Tel Aviv, April 9, 2019. (AP Photo/Ariel Schalit)
That means Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s right-wing and ultra-Orthodox bloc, which seems on track to form the next coalition, is down from 65 seats in the 120-seat Knesset to 64. Hence, every coalition party, even those with just four seats, will now have the ability to topple the government at any point.

However, if New Right does end up clearing the threshold and getting four seats, the Blue and White party led by Benny Gantz would lose two of its current 35 seats and go down to 33, Meretz would go back down to four with United Torah Judaism remaining at seven, and URWP would also lose a seat. In that case, the right-wing bloc would grow to 67 seats and Netanyahu’s coalition would be safer.

Netanyahu clinched a clear electoral victory in Tuesday’s elections, with Likud tied with Blue and White at 35 in terms of Knesset seats, but with the right-wing bloc having a handy lead and Netanyahu seeing a clear path to forming a governing coalition. Blue and White conceded defeat on Wednesday evening.

Likud snagged the party’s best result since the 2003 election (when it won 38 seats under Ariel Sharon), and its best under Netanyahu.

WATCH: Brave Arab Journalist Sides with Netanyahu on Confronting Iran
 Lebanese Journalist Nadim Koteich: I Support Trump and Netanyahu's Anti-Iranian Policy
https://www.youtube.com/watch?time_continue=31&v=mnjFlJbAyjA&ab_channel=MEMRITVVideos
Israel-Arab states relations
Lebanon
A brave voice in the Arab world expressed gratitude to Israel and the US for standing up to the despots and terrorists that run Iran.

Lebanese journalist Nadim Koteich told a hostile interviewer on Lebanon’s Al-Jadeed News that he supports the policies of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and U.S. President Donal Trump with regard to confronting the Iranian threat.

Koteich explained that he is not concerned with Netanyahu or Trump’s domestic policies, because he is not Israeli or American and thus prioritizes his nation’s safety over internal politics in other nations.

He added that he cares about Beirut, not Jerusalem, and Lebanon, not the Golan Heights.
https://unitedwithisrael.org/watch-lebanese-journalist-sides-with-netanyahu-trump-on-confronting-iran/?utm_source=pushengage&utm_medium=pushnotification&utm_campaign=pushengage
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Post  Admin on Wed 10 Apr 2019, 10:55 am

Israeli Election 2019: ‘Bloc Led by Likud Clearly Won,’ Says Exuberant PM
https://unitedwithisrael.org/israeli-election-2019-bloc-led-by-likud-clearly-won-says-exuberant-pm/?
Apr 10, 2019
Related:
Blue and White
Israeli election 2019
Netanyahu
“I will begin forming a right-wing government with our natural partners already tonight… This is a night of tremendous, tremendous victory,” Netanyahu exclaimed.

By Terri Nir, World Israel News

It was a tense national election day on Tuesday, with the 10 p.m. exit polls showing the new Blue and White party in the lead or standing neck and neck with Likud.
Just after 3 a.m. Wednesday morning, however, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu emerged as the clear winner, with Likud leading 35 to 34 over Blue and White. They were followed by religious and right-wing parties – natural partners for Likud – putting Netanyahu in a strong position to form the next government.

“The right-wing bloc led by Likud clearly won,” Netanyahu told thousands of jubilant supporters at Likud headquarters. “I will begin forming a right-wing government with our natural partners already tonight… This is a night of tremendous, tremendous victory.”

“Already tonight, almost all of them declared publicly that they will recommend me to form the next government,” he said. “I intend to finish the job quickly in order to establish a nationalist, stable government.”

“It will be a right-wing government, but I intend to be the prime minister of all the citizens of Israel – right and left, Jews and non-Jews alike. All the citizens of Israel,” he declared.

Acknowledging the major hurdles facing Israel regarding security, economy, society and foreign relations, Netanyahu expressed confidence that “we will be able to meet all these challenges.”

Concerning the “path to peace with Arab nations,” for example, “even as we speak, it’s happening,” he said.

The Israeli leader tearfully thanked his wife and children for their support, noting “how much suffering my family has endured” during a particularly vicious election campaign fraught with mudslinging and defamation.
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Post  Admin on Tue 09 Apr 2019, 11:04 pm

LIVE NOW
https://www.timesofisrael.com/liveblog_entry/updated-exit-polls-indicate-netanyahu-headed-for-victory/?utm_source=liveblog_entry/updated-exit-polls-indicate-netanyahu-headed-for-victory&utm_medium=desktop-browser&utm_campaign=desktop-notifications
Updated exit polls indicate Netanyahu headed for victory
Channel 12 and Channel 13 update their exit polls as the official ballots are counted.

Both networks’ revised samples indicate Netanyahu’s Likud will win 35 seats, compared to Blue and White’s 34.

The Channel 12 survey previously predicted 37 seats for Blue and White and 33 for Likud; Channel 13 had the two parties tied at 36.

Both exit polls now indicate that Shas would be the third-largest party with eight seats, followed by United Torah Judaism with 7. According to the TV stations, the New Right, Zehut and Gesher will fall under the electoral threshold.

In its breakdown of the political blocs, Channel 12 gives 63 of the 120 Knesset seats to the right, compared to 57 for the center-left, giving Netanyahu a clear path to forming a government. According to Channel 13, the right-wing bloc would receive 65 seats, compared to 55 for the center-left.
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Post  Admin on Tue 09 Apr 2019, 7:56 pm

Watch Live coverage of Israeli elections from Jerusalem’s Old City
 April 9, 2019
https://worldisraelnews.com/jns-hosting-live-coverage-of-israels-elections/?
PM Benjamin Netanyahu seen during an election campaign tour in the Mahane Yehuda market in Jerusalem, April 8, 2019. (Yonatan Sindel/Flash90)
 Print  Email 
As Israelis go to the voting booths on Tuesday, April 9, JNS will offer ongoing election coverage with live reports from party headquarters. WIN will be there and will host the live stream right on this page.

As part of the coverage, JNS correspondents will provide live reports from the headquarters of both the Likud and Blue and White parties.

In studio, the broadcast will be hosted by JNS managing director and Jerusalem bureau chief Alex Traiman, as well as co-moderated by Dan Diker, director of the Political Warfare Project at the Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs, and former Knesset Member Dov Lipman, senior manager for community outreach at Honest Reporting.

World Israel News staff members will be in attendance and will broadcast the event LIVE right here on this web page from 8pm-11pm Israel time, 1pm-4pm EDT.

The moderators will be joined by experts on Israeli politics and key geopolitical issues, including Deputy Mayor of Jerusalem Fleur Hassan-Nahoum, Times of London and JNS columnist Melanie Phillips, president of Jerusalem Institute for Strategic Studies Professor Efraim Inbar, professor of politics at Bar-Ilan University Gerald Steinberg, director of Palestinian Media Watch Itamar Marcus, director of the Israel Victory Project Daniel Seaman, director of Israel Unwired Avi Abelow, former U.S. Defense Department adviser on Islamic Affairs Harold Rhode and radio-show host Eve Harow.

JNS will report the results of the first exit polls at 10 p.m. Israel time. In addition to Israeli politics, coverage will focus on the U.S.-Israel relationship, relations between Israeli and American Jews, the upcoming Mideast peace plan being put forward by the Trump administration, global anti-Semitism, BDS and more.

“Israeli elections are a time to celebrate the only democracy in the Middle East,” said Traiman, who is hosting the program. “It is also a time when individuals all around the world will take an increased interest in the future of the world’s only Jewish state.

As JNS works day in and day out to explain breaking developments in Israel to the world, it is fitting that the 2019 elections will provide a platform for our first-ever video broadcast. Through our coverage, we hope to bring greater clarity on key domestic and geopolitical issues facing Israel to audiences around the world.”

The broadcast will take place just outside the Western Wall plaza in Jerusalem’s Old City in the Kirk Douglas Auditorium of the Aish HaTorah World Center in front of a live studio audience, including a large delegation of Americans who are currently studying at Israeli universities.
Broadcast airs at 8:00pm-11:00pm in Israel; 1:00pm-4:00pm EDT; 10:00am-1:00pm PDT
Coverage will be broadcast right here on WIN’s website, the WIN Facebook page and on JNS.org.



Rapper Urges Arab Voters to Resist Israeli Election Boycott
 https://unitedwithisrael.org/rapper-urges-arab-voters-to-resist-israeli-election-boycott/?
Apr 9, 2019
Related:
Israeli Arabs
Israeli election 2019
Tamer Nafar, a hip-hop star from the city of Lod, near Tel Aviv, produced the hit “Tamer Must Vote” in hopes of driving up Arab turnout.

By Associated Press

A popular Arab rapper released a fiery new song ahead of Tuesday’s Israeli elections, encouraging fellow Arab citizens to push back against their community’s calls for a ballot boycott that appear to be gaining steam.

Tamer Nafar, a hip-hop star from the city of Lod, near Tel Aviv, produced the hit “Tamer Must Vote” in hopes of driving up Arab turnout as Israel’s tumultuous campaign draws to a close.

The Arabic-language music video, which has racked up hundreds of thousands of views online, features Nafar sparing with his pro-boycott alter ego in a boxing ring.

Nafar told The Associated Press that his chorus urges voters to “stop the fascists that have won in Israel” — a forceful response to boycott calls that run deep among Arab citizens who make up 20% of Israel’s population.

Last election cycle, Arab factions united into one Joint List, boosting turnout and propelling Arab representatives to a record 13 seats in parliament.

But this year’s climate looks stormier. Political infighting split the slate into two factions, embittering some constituents. Many Arab citizens are also alarmed over Netanyahu’s campaign tactics aimed at shoring up his right-wing base, which they call racist incitement.

Polls are predicting dismal voter turnout in the Arab sector.

A recent survey from the Abraham Fund Initiatives, an Israeli non-profit dedicated to promoting equality, forecasts nearly half of Arab society electing not to vote.

It estimates turnout will drop to 51% from 64% in 2015, “spelling disaster” for Arab political representation.
But some hope recent tensions produce the opposite effect, fueling enough frustration to increase turnout.
“It doesn’t make sense for me to give up this tool,” Nafar raps, “So I’m going to vote.”


Meadows: MORE Criminal Referrals to Come
by Team Bongino
April 9, 2019
Just one day after Congressman Devin Nunes (R-CA) announced he would be sending eight criminal referrals to the Department of Justice relating to FBI/DOJ misconduct, Rep. Mark Meadows said even more referrals would be coming.
Responding to Fox News’ Maria Bartiromo’s tweet that Nunes would be sending eight criminal referrals to DOJ, Meadows wrote, “The right move from @DevinNunes. More criminal referrals to come. And certainly more deserved. Overwhelming evidence shows multiple FBI + DOJ executives abused their power to undermine a duly elected President Trump. They will be held accountable.”
MORE https://bongino.com/meadows-more-criminal-referrals-to-come/?


Bad news for Gantz: Turnout very low among Arab Israeli voters, pollsters say
Hadash-Ta’al slate calls reports of significant drop in voting rates ‘an emergency,’ warning of ‘a very serious blow to Arab representation’
By TOI STAFF and ADAM RASGON
Today, 6:36 pmUpdated at 7:11 pm  1
An Arab Israeli man (L) registers before voting in elections for the Knesset on April 9, 2019 at a school turned polling station in the northern town of Tayibe. (Ahmad Gharabli/AFP)
Leading pollsters reported dramatically reduced turnout in Arab towns in the Knesset elections as of late Tuesday afternoon, amid an overall dip in voter participation rates.
While voting results cannot be released until polls close at 10 p.m., pollsters told media outlets their exit polls showed a low number of voters. Channel 12 commentator Amnon Abramovich predicted the Arab turnout could be lower than ever before in Israeli history.
Camil Fuchs, one of Israel’s most prominent pollsters, was quoted by Channel 13 journalist Raviv Drucker as saying, “Voter turnout in the Arab community like this is something we’ve never seen before.”

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A poor performance by the Arab parties, combined with talk of weak showings by center-left Labor and left-wing Meretz, would reduce Blue and White leader Benny Gantz’s victory prospects and improve Likud leader Benjamin Netanyahu’s chances of retaining power, since it would mean a relatively weak centrist-left-Arab bloc, and more Knesset seats for Likud’s right-wing and ultra-Orthodox allies.

Mano Geva, another well-known pollster, told Channel 12 that polls in Nazareth, Umm al-Fahm and other Arab population centers showed startlingly low numbers of voters arriving at polling stations.
MK Ahmed Tibi stands between his daughter (L) and wife as he casts his vote during elections for the Knesset on April 9, 2019 in in the northern town of Tayibe. (Ahmad Gharabli/AFP)
According to the Hadash-Ta’al electoral alliance, as of 3:30 p.m. some 20 percent of Arab voters had cast ballots.
MORE https://www.timesofisrael.com/turnout-very-low-among-arab-israeli-voters-pollsters-say/?




https://www.timesofisrael.com/amid-low-turnout-blue-and-white-allies-warn-election-slipping-away/?
Amid low turnout, Blue and White, allies warn election slipping away
Echoing Netanyahu’s ‘gevalt’ warnings, Lapid pleads: ‘If you do not get everyone out of the house now, send them to the ballot box, we will not win the elections’
By TOI STAFF
Today, 7:12 pm  1)
Blue and White party leaders Yair Lapid and Benny Gantz ahead of a press conference in Tel Aviv on March 21, 2019. (Tomer Neuberg/Flash90)
Benny Gantz’s Blue and White Party said late Tuesday afternoon that it was deeply worried by the relatively low election day turnout, and warned that if its supporters did not vote in the final few hours, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu would stay in power.

Leaders and officials in Labor, Meretz and the two major Arab parties also expressed concern over the low turnout — with pollsters predicting voting levels in the Arab sector could drop to their lowest levels in decades. A poor performance by Labor, Meretz and the Arab parties would improve Netanyahu’s victory prospects, since it would mean a relatively weak centrist-left-Arab bloc and more Knesset seats for his Likud’s right-wing and ultra-Orthodox allies.

Ex-IDF chief Gantz and Lapid were said to be holding an “emergency meeting” at 6 p.m., because of purportedly “neck and neck” polling between Likud and Blue and White. Blue and White had been four seats ahead of Likud in some pre-election surveys, though the same surveys still indicated Netanyahu would be best-placed to form a majority coalition.

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Lapid issued a call to supporters to boost the vote: “This is the last hours of the campaign. Do not believe a word Netanyahu is saying now. The battle is tight: if you do not get everyone out of the house now, and send them to the ballot box, we will not win the elections.”


Uri Zaki (Ben Zehavi/Times of Israel)
Uri Zaki, a leading official in the left-wing Meretz party and the husband of the party’s leader Tamar Zandberg, said he feared Meretz was “in danger” of falling below the 3.25% electoral threshold, and blamed Labor for “cannibalizing” the left of center vote. Meretz activists in the Negev, he said on Channel 12, were reporting that supporters “aren’t coming out to vote.” Meretz was polling at about 4-5 seats ahead of election day.

Labor officials were also quoted by Channel 12 expressing fears that the party would perform worse than expected in polls, which were already showing it struggling to make it into double figures in the next Knesset. Together with Tzipi Livni’s Kadima, Labor won 24 seats in 2015.

According to the Hadash-Ta’al electoral alliance, as of 3:30 p.m. only some 20 percent of Arab voters had cast ballots. “It is an emergency and we may have a Knesset without Arab parties,” a spokeswoman for the Arab-majority Hadash party said.

Two major Arab lists are running in Tuesday’s elections. In a final pre-election poll last Friday, Hadash-Ta’al, a merger of two parties from the outgoing Knesset’s Joint (Arab) List, had six seats; the Ra’am-Balad alliance of Arab factions received four seats, just above the electoral threshold.
Camil Fuchs, one of Israel’s most prominent pollsters, was quoted by Channel 13 journalist Raviv Drucker as saying Tuesday afternoon, “Voter turnout in the Arab community [at a low level] like this is something we’ve never seen before.”
Nationally, the Central Elections Committee reported 52% turnout as of 6 p.m., some 2.6% down on the same time of day in the 2015 elections.
It was not initially clear what was contributing to the reported low turnout among Arab voters, but it came after it was revealed that Likud had dispatched 1,200 election-day observers equipped with cameras to polling stations in Arab communities. Hadash-Ta’al alleged in a police complaint that the “illegal” action by the “extremist right” was a bid to intimidate Arabs from exercising their right to vote.
Netanyahu has also been warning supporters that Likud voters are not turning out in sufficient numbers, and that he will lose power if they do not head to the polls.
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Post  Admin on Tue 09 Apr 2019, 10:41 am

SHALOM!
On the 9th of April Israelis will be heading to the polls to vote in their party of choice. Every election in Israel seems to have more at stake with ever increased dramatics. On top of it all the Israeli political system is much more volatile than other countries such as America.  Many of our friends around the world may be confused at why we’re even in elections now (6 months early) and how our election system works. 

We put together a quick guide to help you understand some of the issues at stake and to help you pray for our country in this election season.

Dr. Erez Soref, President
of ONE FOR ISRAEL 

2019 Israeli elections, what's next?

As the polls close on the 9th of April in Israel, the elections in Israel will have only just started to take shape and even if Netanyahu’s Likud wins the vote, his grasp of remaining as Prime Minister is far from sure.  Here's some handy information to help you navigate the Israeli political scene.
Continue Reading...
https://www.oneforisrael.org/bible-based-teaching-from-israel/news/2019-israeli-elections-whats-next/

continued.............
2019 Israeli Elections, What’s Next?
As the polls close on the 9th of April in Israel, the elections in Israel will have only just started to take shape...
By OFI Staff
 16


Even if Netanyahu’s Likud wins the majority vote, his grasp of remaining as Prime Minister is far from sure.  Here’s some handy information to help you navigate the Israeli political scene.
Unlike in America where we vote in a president, senate and congress, in Israel you elect a party who’s set forward their nominated president, and other party politicians.  Compared to other countries, the number of parties represented in our election is relatively high considering the small population. This has resulted in a fragmented legislature where smaller and fringe parties outside the main political consensus have representation in the Knesset and no party has the 60+ seat majority needed to form a Government on its own.

The party that wins the majority of seats is typically tasked with setting up a coalition government. But it’s not really that simple, your party winning the majority doesn’t guarantee the Prime Minister position, the President will nominate the party most capable of forming a coalition government. This scenario has happened before. In 2009, after a Tzipi Livni’s Kadima party won a tight race against Likud, Livni wasn’t able to form a large enough coalition to form her government. As a result, then-President Peres gave Netanyahu’s Likud, not Kadima, the role of forming the government and the prime minister position. 

So Coalition building is one of the most critical tasks, not just a single party win.  This is where things can get really difficult and compromises made.  You have the Left Center and right leaning parties but then you also have Religious Orthodox parties and Arab parties.



The typical play when you don’t have an overwhelming majority on the right or left is to bring centrist parties into your coalition.  Religious Parties like Shas are able to keep a strong dominance over the rest of the country because of their power to dissolve coalitions or keep them together. 

 

Then, even if a majority of right wing parties come together, there’s always bargaining over who gets what portfolio, such as finance minister, or the highly coveted defense minister job.  And right wing coalitions have dissolved over these posts before.  So one of the right wing potential coalition members could force another election if they don’t get their demands met in a satisfactory manner.  Also a huge factor besides all the potential coalition member infighting is the very real possibility to have one of Netanyahu’s coalition members or even some from his own party ask him to step aside because of the legal battles he’s facing. 

In fact officially elections happen in Israel every four years.  But more often than not some form of governing coalition crisis leads to an early dissolution of the parliament and early elections.  And this current election is actually not from any coalition split but it was the Prime Minister himself that chose to dissolve the Knesset nearly a year early, on December 24, and called a snap election for April 9.  Many see this move as a way to gather support to battle the legal charges he’s facing in court.  But one thing is for sure about elections in Israel, Nothing is a sure bet!  

But we do know this.  God has this country’s future in His hands.  We pray for our leaders from all the various parties and factions, and you can be praying with us.

No matter what party you might be supporting we can be united in these prayers:
We pray for Your Kingdom come Your will be done in Israel.
You setup and pull down leaders, and we’re asking for righteous men and women to be elected into office that will pursue justice, and truth, and that would honor you in their work and serve the people of Israel well.
We ask for righteousness to go forward in the forming of the coalitions that will make up our government.
We pray for a fair and honest election.
We pray that those who come in power would use their authority to bring fair treatment and justice for the Messianic Jews and Christians of Israel.
Amen!
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Post  Admin on Tue 09 Apr 2019, 10:29 am

LIVE NOWUPDATED 1MIN AGO
https://www.timesofisrael.com/liveblog_entry/likud-said-to-install-1300-hidden-cameras-in-poll-stations-in-arab-towns/?utm_source=liveblog_entry/likud-said-to-install-1300-hidden-cameras-in-poll-stations-in-arab-towns&utm_medium=desktop-browser&utm_campaign=desktop-notifications
1:17 pm
Netanyahu defends hidden cameras in Arab towns, to ‘ensure fair vote’
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is challenged by reporters over news that Likud had deployed hundreds of hidden cameras to polling stations in Arab towns.

He appears to defend the action, which the Central Elections Committee earlier today said was “forbidden.”

“There should be cameras everywhere, not hidden ones,” he says.

Asked by a reporter why the cameras are necessary, he says it’s to “ensure a fair vote.”

1:14 pm
Voter turnout at 24.8% at noon, 2 points below 2015 figure
Central Elections Committee figures say the voter turnout as of noon is 24.8 percent, 2 points below the figure of 26.8% at the same hour on election day in 2015.

1:12 pm
Gantz comes across traffic accident, helps motorcyclist
As he drives north from Ashdod to Rishon Lezion, going from one get-out-the-vote event to another, Blue and White leader Benny Gantz comes across an accident on Route 4.

Gantz is first on the scene, finding a motorcyclist strewn on the road. He calls an ambulance and waits for it to arrive, before continuing to his event in Rishon.

1:09 pm
Labor’s Gabbay votes in Tel Aviv, urges ‘Jews, Arabs, Druze’ to go vote
Avi Gabbay votes in Tel Aviv with his wife and son.

“Go vote, Jews, Arabs, Druze,” Gabbay says.

“I lead the most serious party in Israel, that’s our greatest achievement,” he adds.


Labor party leader Avi Gabbay, accompanied by his wife and son, casts his ballot at a voting station in Tel Aviv on April 9, 2019. (Noam Revkin Fenton/Flash90)
1:04 pm
Gantz in Ashdod: ‘We’re going to win’
Speaking to voters in the southern city of Ashdod, Blue and White leader Benny Gantz says he’s “going to win.”

“The Likud has realized that we are going to be the biggest party and in order to ensure this we must continue all the time and in every place, to join, to go to vote, to influence, to exercise your voting privilege,” he says.

“We are going to win. We’re half a meter away. One final push and we’re going to get it done. Good luck to us all.”

— Raoul Wootliff

1:00 pm
Skirting electioneering restrictions, Netanyahu turns to voters via Facebook
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Tuesday works around existing electioneering laws that forbid campaigning on Election Day by taking to Facebook constantly and repeatedly throughout the day.

Israel’s electioneering laws, most of them written in the 1950s, are specific about restrictions on radio and television advertising, as well as media interviews and public signs and posters — but are famously silent on more modern avenues of communications like social media. An attempt to update the laws in the outgoing Knesset was stymied — by Likud.

With Facebook an open and permitted platform, some parties are taking advantage, especially Likud, while rival Blue and White appears to be relying more on its activists on the ground and photo ops of its leaders to mobilize support.

Netanyahu started election day with a live question-and-answer session on Facebook.

After voting, he posted a video imploring voters to head to the polls and vote for Likud. Striking a personal note, the prime minister and his wife next released a video from outside the polling station after voting at the school their sons attended.

After voting, Netanyahu and his wife Sara headed to the party’s get-out-the-vote phone banks where he called potential voters to encourage them to vote for Likud, although the one call he made on camera was less than successful due to the combination of a bad phone connection and disbelief from “Dalia” on the other end of the line.

“I encourage you to go out and vote, and to vote for Likud, so that we can continue our work,” the prime minister said.

He told the woman on the other end of the line to check Facebook so that she can see that it really was Netanyahu. When it appeared the woman was unable to check the social network, Netanyahu asked his wife to speak to the woman in a further attempt to prove that it was really them.

“We are happy to hear you will be voting Likud,” Sara said.

12:29 pm
Over 80,000 take advantage of election-day vacation, flock to national parks
More than 80,000 people are taking advantage of the day off of work and school on Election Day to visit Israel’s national parks, the Nature and Parks Authority announces.

The most popular parks are Caesaria, Masada, Beit Guvrin, Banias, Ein Gedi, and Tel Dan.

The Authority is running election-related activities for children, such as a vote for a favorite migrating bird in many of the national parks, including at Zippori National Park and at Einot Tzukim near the Dead Sea.

— Melanie Lidman

2hr ago
Likud said to deploy 1,300 hidden cameras in poll stations in Arab towns
The Ynet news site carries a startling report, unconfirmed as yet by official sources.

It says the Likud party has deployed no fewer than 1,300 hidden cameras in the shirts of elections observers in polling stations in Arab towns where the party’s campaign staffers suspect there was “problematic” levels of election fraud.

The effort cost Likud “a not insubstantial sum,” Ynet says.

Likud already has a long history of campaigning against the Arab community in ways many critics, including some in Likud itself, have deemed racist. In the 2015 election campaign, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu drew widespread criticism for claiming on election day — incorrectly, as it turned out — that Arab voters were “coming in droves” to the polls. The 2019 Likud campaign has warned voters that the election was “either Bibi or Tibi,” a reference to Arab lawmaker Ahmad Tibi.
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Post  Admin on Tue 09 Apr 2019, 10:25 am

TIMES OF ISRAEL POLLING 2019
Likud said to install 1,300 hidden cameras in poll stations in Arab towns
Turnout at 12.9% as of 10 a.m., 0.8 points lower than at the same hour in 2015; several parties report missing or vandalized ballots at some stations
https://www.timesofisrael.com/liveblog-april-9-2019/?utm_source=liveblog-april-9-2019&utm_medium=desktop-browser&utm_campaign=desktop-notifications
55min ago
Bibi vs. Tibi, in pictures
1hr ago
Hadash-Ta'al says hidden cameras meant to 'prevent Arab citizens from voting'
1hr ago
Elections Committee: It is forbidden to film voters
1hr ago
Zehut claims its ballots are being hidden at Givatayim polling station
By TOI STAFF
Today, 7:00 am  1
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Blue and White leader Benny Gantz votes at a polling station in his hometown of Rosh Ha'ayin on April 9, 2019. (Raoul Wootliff/Times of Israel)Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu votes in Jerusalem on April 9, 2019. (Haim Zach/GPO/Flash90)Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu votes in Jerusalem on April 9, 2019. (Haim Zach/GPO/Flash90)An Arab Israeli woman serves beverages in front of an electoral poster at a polling station during Israel's parliamentary elections on April 9, 2019, in Daliyat al-Carmel in northern Israel. (Jalaa Marey/AFP)An Arab Israeli woman serves beverages in front of an electoral poster at a polling station during Israel's parliamentary elections on April 9, 2019, in Daliyat al-Carmel in northern Israel. (Jalaa Marey/AFP)Citizens cast their ballots at a voting station in Jerusalem, during the Knesset Elections, on April 9, 2019 (Yonatan Sindel/Flash90)Citizens cast their ballots at a voting station in Jerusalem, during the Knesset Elections, on April 9, 2019 (Yonatan Sindel/Flash90) An Israeli man arrives at a polling station to vote in Israel's parliamentary elections on April 9, 2019 in the northern Israeli town of Taibe. (Ahmad Gharabli/AFP)An Israeli man arrives at a polling station to vote in Israel's parliamentary elections on April 9, 2019 in the northern Israeli town of Taibe. (Ahmad Gharabli/AFP)Children watch as an ultra-Orthodox Jewish man prepares to cast his vote during Israel's parliamentary elections on April 9, 2019 in Jerusalem. (Menahem Kahana/AFP)Children watch as an ultra-Orthodox Jewish man prepares to cast his vote during Israel's parliamentary elections on April 9, 2019 in Jerusalem. (Menahem Kahana/AFP)Soldiers cast their ballots on April 9, 2019 (Israel Defense Forces)Soldiers cast their ballots on April 9, 2019 (Israel Defense Forces)

The Times of Israel is liveblogging Tuesday’s events as they unfold

55min ago
Bibi vs. Tibi, in pictures
In the first month or so of the campaign, Likud claimed the election was between Bibi — Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu — and Tibi — Arab Israeli lawmaker Ahmad Tibi. (That is, the party claimed, a vote for Blue and White leader Benny Gantz was tantamount to a vote for Hadash-Ta’al’s Tibi.)

Here it is in election day pictures: Bibi vs. Tibi.


Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu votes in Israel’s parliamentary elections in Jerusalem, on April 9, 2019. (Ariel Schalit/Pool/AFP)

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu votes in Jerusalem on April 9, 2019. (Haim Zach/GPO/Flash90)

Arab Israeli lawmaker Ahmed Tibi, center, stands alongside his daughter, left, and wife, right, as he casts his vote during Israel’s parliamentary elections on April 9, 2019 in the northern Israeli town of Taibe. (Ahmad Gharabli/AFP)

Arab Israeli lawmaker Ahmed Tibi, center, stands alongside his daughter, left, and wife, right, as he casts his vote during Israel’s parliamentary elections on April 9, 2019 in the northern Israeli town of Taibe. (Ahmad Gharabli/AFP)
1hr ago
Hadash-Ta’al says hidden cameras meant to ‘prevent Arab citizens from voting’
The Arab-majority party Hadash-Ta’al slams the “illegal” action by the “extremist right” to place hundreds of hidden cameras in Arab polling stations.

“The extreme right understands our strength and ability to topple the government, and is crossing all red lines, using illegal means, to interfere and prevent Arab citizens from voting,” the party says in a statement.

“But we know our strength. We’re going to vote today despite them.”

1hr ago
Elections Committee: It is forbidden to film voters
The Central Elections Committee says, “It is forbidden for polling station committee members and other staff to film voters or the voting process. It is permitted to film only in extraordinary circumstances for the purposes of reporting” incidents of alleged fraud.

“Police should be notified in the case of illegal filming,” the committee says.

The statement comes after police and ballot officials catch hundreds of Likud staffers and observers carrying hidden cameras into polling stations in Arab towns nationwide.

1hr ago
Zehut claims its ballots are being hidden at Givatayim polling station
Zehut party activists release a video from a polling station in the central Israeli town of Givatayim showing what they say are attempts to hide their party’s ballot slip behind other slips with similar letters.


Facebook screen capture from Zehut activists in the central Israeli town of Givatayim that appears to show Zehut’s ballots hidden under other parties’ ballots. (Facebook screen capture)
— Melanie Lidman

1hr ago
Netanyahu casts ballot in Jerusalem, calls voting ‘a holy act’
Voting “is a holy act, it’s the essence of democracy,” Netanyahu tells supporters as he votes in Jerusalem. “You must choose well, I can’t say [more],” he says, smiling, a reference to restrictions on political interviews on election day.

“We have so much more to do, continuing to strengthen our economy and development,” he then says, warning Israelis that “if you don’t go out to vote, you’ll get [Yair] Lapid as your next prime minister.”

2hr ago
Before voting, Netanyahu warns supporters, ‘don’t be complacent’
Before heading to his polling station in Jerusalem, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu takes to Facebook to once more urge right-wing voters to cast their ballots for his Likud party, telling viewers to convince their friends and family to go to the voting stations as well.

“I ask of you to go out and vote. Don’t be complacent. It’s not in our pocket. It will only be in our pocket if you come out and vote Likud,” he says.

Sitting down in the patio of his residence, he then takes questions from Facebook users, most of whom compliment him and declare their support for his party.

“Well done,” Netanyahu replies to one woman who says she’d already voted Likud on Tuesday morning. “Wait a second, that’s not enough,” he quickly adds. “Did you check with the neighbors? Did you send messages to family, to friends and acquaintances? Vote Likud. Only a large Likud will prevent a left-wing government.”

— Raphael Ahren

2hr ago
Police confiscate hundreds of hidden cameras at polling stations
Channel 13 reveals that it was police officers deployed to polling stations who discovered the hidden cameras being used by election observers from Likud in Arab towns.

Police found such cameras in towns across the country, including Sakhnin, Majd al-Krum, Nazareth, Tamra and Jisr a-Zarka.

Police removed the cameras, but allowed the observers to continue working at the stations.

Police commanders are now awaiting orders from Central Elections Committee head Justice Hanan Melcer as to the legality of the hidden camera campaign before acting on the issue.

Over a thousands cameras were reportedly found in Arab polling areas, but a handful were also discovered in Haredi ballot stations.

2hr ago
Lapid: ‘We’re now a centimeter from victory’
Voting at a polling station in the Tel Aviv neighborhood of Ramat Aviv, Blue and White number two Yair Lapid says that the party needs just “a tiny push” to win.

“We are nearly there. We need two more seats and we have won and it will be a historic day for Israel. Just a tiny push and we are there,” Lapid tells supporters. “Benny Gantz said this week that we are a meter from victory, well we are now a centimeter from victory.”

In a message to voters considering other left-wing parties, Lapid says, “A vote for others is a vote to give Netanyahu another four years.”


Blue and White party no. 2 Yair Lapid arrives to vote at a polling station in the Ramat Gan neighborhood of Tel Aviv on April 9, 2019. (Raoul Wootliff/Times of Israel)
— Raoul Wootliff

2hr ago
Man arrested for attempting to install hidden camera in Rahat polling station
A young man in the southern Bedouin town of Rahat is caught attempting to install a hidden camera in a polling station, in an apparent attempt at forcing the disqualification of the entire ballot. The man is arrested by police.

2hr ago
Police waiting for judge’s instructions to intervene over Likud cameras
A senior police official says Supreme Court Justice Hanan Melcer, chair of the Central Elections Committee, is examining the legality of Likud’s apparent planting of hundreds of hidden cameras among its polling station observers in Arab towns.

The police official says if it turns out the cameras constitute an illegal disruption of the election process, police are ready to step in and act according to Melcer’s instructions.

The Likud camera effort includes an estimated 1,300 devices in Arab towns throughout the Galilee and Negev, according to reports, including in Arab-majority areas in Haifa, Nazareth, Tamra and elsewhere.

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