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April 1, 2015 / 12 Nisan, 5775
At a Glance

Posts Tagged ‘Knesset’

Israeli Anti-Bibi Media turn Four Election Polls into one Lie

Friday, January 16th, 2015

Four pre-election polls published Thursday night and Friday morning show varying results, but two of them reveal that the popularity of Labor-Livni has grown by a solitary seat in the Knesset. Nevertheless, Israel’s establishment media are reporting the trivial news as if there is a rush of support for the left.

Polls are not  meaningless, but when a party registers one seat more or one less from week to week, it is virtually insignificant, numerically as well as statistically when taking into account the margin of error in small samples.

That has not stopped Israel Radio, known by the misnomer in English as the Voice of Israel, from promoting the results of this week’s poll as a victory for the “Zionist camp,” a label now claimed by everyone except for Neturei Karta.

Similarly,  three television polls show that the lead party is the “Zionist camp,” whose list of candidates likely to be elected includes those who want to turn over all of Judea and Samaria as well as half of Jerusalem to the Palestinian Authority, which has said that no Jew will be allowed to live there.

The same poll trumpeted by Israel radio also shows that Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu has a 4 percentage lead over Labor party leaders Yitzchak Herzog and Tzipi Livni when voters are faced with the question of who should be Prime Minister. However, Rafi Smith, who carried out the poll, said this is insignificant because of the margin of error, which apparently does not apply to results in favor of the left.

But that was the secondary headline.

The big news, according to Israel Radio, is that Herzog-Livni is now leading the Likud party by two seats instead of one.

The gap is 2, 4 and 1 in three polls on television channels 2, 10 and 1.

More significant is that Herzog-Livni still have no chance to form a coalition government without an ungodly collection of Meretz and Yisrael Beiteinu or Yisrael Beiteinu and Haredi parties.

After adding up all the numbers, the picture has not changed from last week or even last month: There are two camps: the anti-Netanyahu parties of Labor-Livni, Meretz and Yesh Atid, headed by Yair Lapid; and the pro-Netanyahu camp of the Likud and the Jewish Home, which according to all polls is holding stable with 16-17 mandates.

The most significant changes in the numbers relate to Yisrael Beiteinu, which has been in a clear trend of a decline in the past month. The four polls give the party 5, 6 and 7 seats, far less than when the current Knesset was dissolved.

After taking into account small differences in poll results for the other parties, Kulanu, headed by Moshe Kahlon, Yesh Atid, Meretz and Shas are not moving up or down significantly.

Eli Yishai, who split from Shas and formed his own party, still is on the borderline of being shut out of the Knesset.

There are other very significant indications: If Labor-Livni picks up any more seats, it will be at the expense of Meretz or Yesh Atid, and vice-versa. If Kulanu attracts more voters, they likely will move over from Yesh Atid, Yisrael Beiteinu and possibly the Likud.

There still are two months left before voters go to the polls, and Israel Radio and most of the television channels will try to convince voters that Herzog and Livni have the best chance to win.

If the combined party comes out on top, President Reuven Rivlin will have little choice but to give it the first crack at forming a government, which brings back to mind the elections five years ago.

Feiglin Supporters Preach Likud

Thursday, January 8th, 2015

A Likud activist who a was a strong supporter of outgoing KM Moshe Feiglin posted on his Facebook page Thursday a message encouraging people to stick with the Likud.

Temple Activist Yehuda Glick, who shares with Feiglin the objective of allowing Jews to pray on the Temple Mount, also is staying with the Likud instead of following Feiglin to a new party he wants to form.

Feiglin announced on Monday he is leaving the Likud.

Gidon Ariel, a Likud activist for English speakers, wrote Thursday on Facebook,

As you may know, I have been a Likud activist for over ten years, and many of you are members of the Likud because of my efforts.

I have never hidden the fact that my presence in the Likud is not to be a yes-man to anyone, but to defend the Likud’s stated values as clarified in its constitution, through supporting activists and MKs who carry that banner, speaking for the party in the media, running for office, and other activities.

I now count hundreds of rank and file members and more than a dozen Central committee members as people who respect my recommendations.

I joined the Likud with Moshe Feiglin, and while I am a close friend of his and his inner circle, they all know that the hundreds of people who I signed up to the Likud over the years are “mine,” not “theirs.”…

I continue to believe that the best place that a supporter of Eretz Yisrael can make a significant impact is within the Likud.

I am staying in the Likud, I encourage my friends to stay, and if you aren’t a member yet, I urge you to consider joining.

Ariel formerly lived in Maaleh Adumim and moved to the community of Maaleh Hever in the southern Hebron Hills two years ago.

Earlier this week, Glick delivered a similar message to Ariel’s.

He praised Feiglin’s character and philosophy but added he is staying in the Likud “so that the next elections will have a large party representation.”

Glick is on an “unrealistic” spot on the Likud party list and recently said he is “running” more for symbolic purposes than with any intent to be elected a Knesset Member.

Feiglin’s idea was to sign up thousands of people who used to support the former national religious Mafdal party and form a large block in the Likud, which has said has left its true principles that he represents.

Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu and most senior party leaders never have been happy with Feiglin’s presence and have kept him off a realistic place on the Knesset last until the last elections.

In the party primaries last week, they made enough deals to make sure Feiglin would not return to the Knesset.

 

Stormy Knesset Session

Wednesday, January 7th, 2015

H/T: Jameel@Muqata

Attorney General May Indict Arab MK Haneen Zoabi for Incitement

Tuesday, January 6th, 2015

Attorney General Yehuda Weinstein is considering indicting Arab Knesset Member Haneen Zoabi for incitement last year when she told demonstrators that Israeli Arabs who are government guards “should be scared of us.”

Zoabi has been arguably the most outspoken anti-Zionist and protagonist in the Knesset, having called Israel a racist state, describing IDF soldiers as criminals and terrorists and generally trashing the government and damning the country that she is supposed to be serving.

She also participated in the IHH-terrorist flotilla in 2010, in which dozens of armed men brutally attacked mostly unarmed Navy soldiers who came on board to prevent the boat from breaking the maritime embargo against Hamas-controlled Gaza.

Zoabi is a member of the Balad party, which produced Azmi Bashara, who fled Israel after being indicted for aiding Hezbollah terrorists in the Second Lebanon War in 2006.

A lawyer for the anti-Jewish state Adalah organization, acting on behalf of Balad, wrote Weinstein that Israeli prosecutors do not put public figures on trial for spontaneous comments made in “the heat of the moment” and that Weinstein should explain to the court why he “discriminated” aganst Zoabi.

One of the reasons that other public figures have not been indicted for incitement is because they have not incited against Arabs, although one or two should have been tried and convicted for saying such things as,”Shoot the settlers in their legs.”

No Jewish MK ever has aided or encouraged attacks on Arabs.

But why should Zoabi be tried for incitement?

Here is what she had to say about the three Hamas terrorists who kidnapped and murdered three yeshiva students last June:

 They are not terrorists, even if I do not agree with their actions, these people [the murderers] do not have any escape, any escape.”

On pledging loyalty to Israel, she has said:

When you agree with the ‘Jewish state’ idea, you necessarily agree with the idea of loyalty to this state. Rejecting the ‘Jewish state’ concept will block the road for anyone who demands our loyalty to such a state.”

She also has lumped Tzipi Livni with Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu and Foreign Minister Avgidor Lieberman, calling all of them “fascists.”

Zoabi also thinks a nuclear Iran is not such a bad idea, saying”

I am afraid of real risk rather than of potential risk. The Iranian bomb was only ‘a potential’ threat. The real danger was the IDF… It is more dangerous to the world, more dangerous to everyone, more dangerous to the Palestinians, to Israelis, to have Israel as the only powerful state…The Israeli violence of the army is an outcome of Israel’s convenient feeling that no one will restrict her.’

Weinstein actually is wrong to even to think about putting her on trial for incitement.

She should be tried for being a traitor.

Netanyahu Adopts JewishPress Blogger’s Electoral Reform Proposal

Tuesday, January 6th, 2015

It isn’t every day that the Prime Minister of Israel adopts an idea proposed by yours truly, first introduced on the pages of JewishPress.com.

Though for the sake of transparency, other MKs have brazenly taken ideas we’ve proposed at the Muqata Think-Tank and then claimed them for their own, and we’ve been told that Netanyahu is also familiar with Jameel’s very successful Scotch whiskey counter-boycott.

On Monday, Prime Minister Netanyahu introduced an electoral reform plan that would “revolutionize” the Israeli multi-party system, and move us over to a two-party system.

The idea is that the party with the most seats would automatically form the government and appoint the Prime Minister, without needing to form a coalition, or go to the President of Israel.

If this sounds familiar to you, it should, because in December I analyzed the problem with our current system, and provided that solution.

In the original article I explained why it would work, and how the idea should be properly implemented.

The JewishPress.com was even kind enough to put one of those Asher Schwartz cartoons on it.

A Solution Within the Existing Framework So what can be done now with what we have?

If Israel wants to stay with the parliamentary system, the solution is not as complex as you might think. It requires two steps.

First of all, remove the minimum electoral threshold. Let people vote for whom they want.

The second is, let the head of the largest elected party become the Prime Minister, automatically, with no requirement at all to assemble a coalition to form the government.

I then explain why this will work — because people in Israel vote strategically, they want to get a specific Prime Minister, along with specific platforms or MKs:

The Intended Consequences What do I foresee happening?

Only the die-hards will vote for the small parties. Most everyone else will want to make sure the Prime Minister comes from the biggest party that represents them the closest.

We would see a lot of parties consolidating automatically.

There will be a natural push to make sure the Likud or Labor becomes the biggest party.

Unfortunately, Netanyahu seems to have left out an incredibly important component of the idea – removing the minimum electoral threshold.

And that reminds me of the other half-baked change he made in 1996 — introducing direct elections for the Prime Minster, but without simultaneously introducing it for the Knesset too.

Removing the minimum threshold is critical for my idea to work properly – and Mr. Netanyahu, I know you’re reading this, so pay attention… .

If Israel ends up with a binary-based majority system, where you vote for a party and not individuals, and there are only two parties in the Knesset, you will have implemented a tyranny of democracy onto Israel. For four years the winner will run roughshod over the loser, and it will always be win-lose; the opposition might as well not even show up for work.

For democracy to work properly, citizens need an effective opposition capable of opposing the majority, at least in the worst case scenarios.

It’s important to remember, unlike the U.S., Israel doesn’t have truly separate executive and legislative branches, with the checks and balances that brings. Instead, Israel has a legislative branch whose members also make up the executive branch.

In Netanyahu’s version of my idea, if Labor (or whatever they call themselves) won and wanted to implement another Disengagement or Oslo 5, there would be no way to stop it in Netanyahu’s binary-based Knesset, as Labor would always have an automatic majority.

Nor could there even be a legislature vs. executive conflict to fight it out; in Netanyahu’s version it simply can’t happen.

The other problem is that by forcing people to vote A or B, thereby guaranteeing only A and B get into the Knesset, a significant enough percent of Israeli society will not be represented. You will be disenfranchising segments of the population.

Voting levels will drop as people see no reason to vote for a party that can ignore them, knowing there is no alternative.

By removing the threshold, you don’t exclude people who don’t fit into category A or B.

This will have two consequences, both incredibly important:

1) You don’t need a 61 vote majority for most run-of-the-mill legislation to pass, so having a few small parties won’t make a difference on most votes.

But on more important issues, the society changing ones, you do not want to give an automatic pass to the biggest party (think Oslo, Disengagement) – YOU WANT THEM TO WORK HARD FOR IT before they can throw you out of your home.

2) By allowing the small 1 or 2 man parties to be get in, you create a real reason for the big parties to pay attention to the individual sectors internally.

If the Likud knows that the Israeli-Arabs and Hareidim (just to name two obvious examples) may vote for an Israeli-Arab or Hareidi party instead of them and they will get into the Knesset, the big parties will make sure that Israeli-Arabs and Hareidim are included on their party’s list and paid attention to, to get and keep that sector’s vote.

I highly recommend you read my original analysis of the election idea, and the implementation.

And Mr. Prime Minister – I am available for consultation – you know how to reach me.

New Update: Hotovely Behind by 55 Votes but Likud May Order Total Recount

Sunday, January 4th, 2015

7:30 AM:  Knesset Member Tzipi Hotovely has fallen behind Avi Dichter by 55 votes for the 20th place on the Likud list of candidates during a partial recount, but the number is not final. In addition, the Likud party is considering whether to order a full recount of the votes in last week’s primary elections.

10:51 PM: Hotovely has taken the lead over Dichter by several votes in the recount that still is not final. If she holds the lead, she will be in the 20th place and virtually guaranteed to return to the Knesset.

MK Hotovely appealed to a Likud party committee Sunday for a recount of 15 ballot boxes where there are serious questions of a correct tally in last week’s primaries that left her in the 26th place on the Likud list of candidates.

The Likud is weathering serious embarrassment over the fact that only two women, Miri Regev and Gila Gamaliel, were nominated to realistic places on the Likud ticket.

Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu wants Hotovely back in the Knesset, and if reports – unconfirmed but from highly reliable sources – are correct, he can thank her for helping dump MK Moshe Feiglin to an unrealistic spot.

Netanyahu has the option of placing Hotovely in a guaranteed spot reserved for a woman if the recount does not bump her up five places in place of Avi Dichter, who was ahead of her by only 754 votes before the recount erased the gap.

Aides to Hotovely said “people voted but their votes were not counted.”

Among other problems in the tally, 400 votes from Judea and Samaria are missing, and in one community in the Galilee, 200 voters were cast but 250 were counted.

In Netivot, one of the seven polling stations did not come up with a single vote for Transportation Minister Yisrael Katz, who was in the top five at the end of the nationwide count of ballots

The legal adviser to the Likud party said, “Published results are not the final and official count.”

Hotovely is extremely popular among the national camp and especially in Judea and Samaria. She also has the advantage of being good-looking, a serious factor  the success of many politicians all over the world.

Her image of a right-winger does not compare with that of Feiglin, who for years has been the black sheep of the Likud party. Netanyahu and the Likud mayor of Modi’in engineered behind the scenes to get rid of him.

Latest Post-Scandal Election Poll

Tuesday, December 30th, 2014

All the scandals are making their mark, at least in the latest pre-election polls. The Knesset channel has released a new survey.

Labor (Herzog/Livni): 24

Likud (Netanyahu): 23

Bayit Yehudi (Bennett): 16

Arab Party: 12

Yesh Atid (Lapid): 10

Kulanu (Kachlon): 9

UTJ (Gafni/Litzman): 8

Meretz (Gal-on): 8

Yisrael Beiteinu (Liberman): 5

Shas (Deri?): 5 UTJ gained a little from Shas, Yishai doesn’t make the cut, Meretz seems to have gained from Liberman (go figure), Kachlon too.

It just makes you wonder how accurate these really polls are.

What hasn’t changed is that the small parties will still beholding the keys as to who will be the next prime minister of Israel.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/latest-post-scandal-election-poll/2014/12/30/

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