Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Israeli Elections on the Way?

May 1, 2012

According to reports coming from Israel, the Likud party is considering calling early elections, which would be held either before the High Holidays in early September, or following then in mid-October. What is sure is that this will certainly work towards strengthening the Likud's hold over the Knesset. In the meantime, today Tzipi Livni, the former head of the centrist-right Kadima party resigned following losing the leadership to former general Shaul Mofaz, who will need to work hard to not lose their votes to the upcoming Yesh Atid (there is a Future) party, led by Yair Lapid. This party will certainly make waves in the elections; it seems that every Israeli election has a "star" party that comes and goes like the tide. Lapid, a former TV anchor and columnist is the son of Tomi Lapid, who also made the jump from journalism to politics during the nineties.

As for the Labor party, they have hopes that the former investigative and hardball former radio host ShellyYahomovitz can save them from thier own self-destruction, following the exiting of 4 members who followed Defense Minister Ehud Barak and founded the Atsmaut (Independence) party, and left the labor party with a measly 8 seats. Another party, which will need to be watched is Avgidor Lieberman's Israel Beitenu (Israels Our Home), which swept us 15 seats and serves as the third largest party, behind Kadima and Likud, but of course has served the Likud as their major coalition partner. If an indictment comes against Lieberman for corruption in the next few weeks, that could lead to a decline in the party, which has led the anti-democratic legislation during the last few years.

Lastly, for the Sephardic religious party Shas, the fourth largest party in the Knesset, could see a split if they do not allow Aryeh Deri back in as a its leader, now that he is out of prison for serving his time related to corruption. Therefore, one of the most charismatic leaders of the nineties is back on the playing field and if the Rabbi Ovadia Yosef does not give him ample voice in the party, he could form a competitive party dividing their vote.

As we see, things are heating up, and once declared I will follow this closely! Something is wrong about elections in the summer, or even around the September Holidays. Well, one thing is for sure, the competing parties better get their act together if they want to make a dent in the Likud's ability to sweep more seats. Sadly, I say this since under the Likud and Israel Beitenu government no progress whatsoever has been made on the peace process, and little tolerance has been shown to competing views within the Israeli society. I could go on, but this will be for another blog entry.....

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