Netanyahu would win early poll - survey

2012-04-30 20:37

Jerusalem - Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu would win an election if it were held now, an opinion poll showed on Monday as he weighs strategy towards Iran's nuclear programme and speculation grows that he will seek a renewed public mandate.

The next parliamentary election in Israel is not due until October 2013, but the right-wing premier signalled on Sunday he was considering moving up the ballot.

A slew of commentators, citing cracks in the governing coalition over formulating a new law that could force ultra-Orthodox Jews to serve in the conscript military, said Netanyahu may opt for an election as early as August or September.

On Saturday, a former Israeli spymaster branded the country's leaders as "messianic", in the strongest criticism yet from a security veteran of threats to launch a pre-emptive war to disable Iranian nuclear sites.

But a poll conducted on Sunday night and published in the popular Yedioth Ahronoth daily showed Netanyahu's Likud party winning 30 of 120 parliamentary seats if a ballot were held now, up from the 27 it currently holds.

Such a result would make him the leader of the largest faction and the likely candidate to form the next government.

"The poll indicates ... Netanyahu has no cause for concern, and he apparently knows it. He is not just going to elections, he's sprinting to them," Yedioth Ahronoth political correspondent Sima Kadmon wrote.

Coalition calculations

Should Netanyahu lose the support of ultra-Orthodox coalition partners over the conscription issue, he could turn to centrist factions to replace them after the ballot.

No one party has ever won an outright parliamentary majority in an Israeli general election, and the poll indicated that would not change in the next ballot.

According to the survey, right-wing parties would control 61 parliamentary seats compared with 66 at present, giving Netanyahu a governing majority he would likely attempt to widen with centrist factions.

Israel's main opposition Kadima party - now the largest in parliament according to the poll - would drop from 28 seats to 11. The centrist Kadima recently replaced its leader, former foreign minister Tzipi Livni, with ex-defence chief Shaul Mofaz.

The survey showed the Labour Party, widely expected to gain strength from a wave of social protests that swept Israeli cities last summer, taking 18 seats, a steep rise from its current 8, and becoming the second largest faction.

Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman's ultra-nationalist party Yisrael Beitenu, Netanyahu's biggest coalition partner, would capture 13 seats, down from its current 15, the poll showed.

The poll surveyed 500 people and has a margin of error of 4.5%.

In an interview with Yedioth Ahronoth's website, Ynet, Lieberman described an early election as a done deal. "It's now just a matter of [setting] dates," he said.

Lieberman has been a leading advocate of imposing military service on ultra-Orthodox Jews - most Jewish men and women are subject to the draft at the age of 18 - and requiring Israeli Arabs to perform national service outside the armed forces.

Ultra-Orthodox parties in the coalition have said they would fight such a move. The current conscription law expires in August and the government has to decide the issue soon.

Netanyahu has also been under pressure from pro-settler coalition partners and some outspoken Likud party members who have questioned his commitment to Jewish settlements in the occupied West Bank, where Palestinians seek a state.

Netanyahu's government has pledged to evict or raze numerous settlement outposts put up without official sanction, drawing warnings from some political allies that his coalition could collapse as a result.

  • Fred - 2012-05-01 07:46

    My gloves are on and I'm bobbing and weaving. Who's out there? Iqbal? Muhammed? Patrick? Fidel?

      AnthonyfromAfrica - 2012-05-01 08:06

      Don't know about Muhammed, But Patrick on Thursday went for a walk on his large estate, and now seems to be lost. Not to panic, has happened before, and than it took him one week, to find the way back to his hut. Fidel, took advantage of a long week end, and went to Disneyland in Paris. At least this is the official version. Her real purpose in Paris, is to assassinate Jean-Marie Le Pen As wew all know, she is smart, and flying back on Emirates!!! ( saves her R6300.- !!! )

      Fred - 2012-05-01 15:23

      :) :)

      Jaba - 2012-05-01 15:30

      lol :)

      Fidel - 2012-05-01 18:13

      My aching sides! As they say around these parts, LOLEST.............. Brilliant Anthony.

      AnthonyfromAfrica - 2012-05-01 18:37

      All jokes aside, Now I am really getting worried, and may I say, a bit jealous.......! Both Patrick and Fidel, out the whole weekend !! Than Fidel comes strolling in at 18.13........ and than 10 minutes later,at 18.23, Patrick comes in whistling.... What's going on ???????

      Ask - 2012-05-01 18:37

      Ignore Fred - He is an Israeli agent paid to make these posts... he get s paid per letter...

      Fred - 2012-05-01 19:26

      Then they're not insults :)

      Fred - 2012-05-01 19:27

      Got any more doctored quotes Joe? :) :)

      Fred - 2012-05-01 23:45

      Correction: if my intention is to insult you Patrick, then they would be insults, regardless of how you take them

      Ask - 2012-05-02 02:25

      @Fred - you know I have many quotes which you CANNOT disprove... so instead you saying I have 'doctored' quotes... go and play nurse and check it out... You know why Netanyahu would win... check out one of his quotes... "Israel should have exploited the repression of the demonstrations in China, when world attention focused on that country, to carry out mass expulsions among the Arabs of the territories." Benyamin Netanyahu, then Israeli Deputy Foreign Minister, former Prime Minister of Israel, tells students at Bar Ilan University, From the Israeli journal Hotam, November 24, 1989.

      Ask - 2012-05-02 02:27

      Here is another one for the road... "If I were an Arab leader, I would never sign an agreement with Israel. It is normal; we have taken their country. It is true God promised it to us, but how could that interest them? Our God is not theirs. There has been Anti - Semitism, the Nazis, Hitler, Auschwitz, but was that their fault? They see but one thing: we have come and we have stolen their country. Why would they accept that?" David Ben Gurion (the first Israeli Prime Minister) quoted by Nahum Goldmann in Le Paraddoxe Juif (The Jewish Paradox), pp121.

      Jaba - 2012-05-02 08:41

      Do you have a source for the Ben-Gurion quote? For that matter ANY of these supposed quotes? It was originally attributed to to Illion Papas, and Benny Morris claims it as a fake. Their is no record of Ben-Gurion saying it or writing it. You are aware that their is a whole INDUSTRY of fake Zionist quotes? I hope your not that naive. So far no one here has sourced ONE of these quotes. Pretty intellectual dishonest if you ask me.

      Ask - 2012-05-02 10:10

      @Jaba - you call that a source; don't insult my intelligence...

      Fred - 2012-05-02 17:40

      Joe, and the PLO websites are not impartial sites. Obviously.

      Ask - 2012-05-02 20:32

      @Fred - I suppose your sites are impartial?... I had a look at the site you recommended... interesting stuff; I will need sometime to go through it... and will let you know my findings... thanks..

  • Jaba - 2012-05-02 08:44

    Joe...if you're going to continue to fault Israel because of things Ben Gurion said (fake quotes) 60 years ago during a time of war, then by the same token the Palestinians have that Nazi collaborator Grand Mufti al-Husayni as their spiritual leader and are guilty for that. A picture is worth a thousand words - I don’t need to quote how they both wanted and tried to murder all the Jews.

      Ask - 2012-05-02 10:15

      @Jaba - what exactly is your point... what has this so-called picture to do with me... I can show a picture of Jasser Arafat holding Golda Meir's hand... what does that prove? that they were the best of friends...

      Fred - 2012-05-02 17:41

      The point I think is that you're putting out quotes from inflammatory websites to support your biased and misinformed beliefs.

      Ask - 2012-05-02 18:36

      @Fred - I don't think you should think... you cannot disprove it... why don't you go and do your girlie things elsewhere...

      Fred - 2012-05-02 18:51

      Not much to respond to here, Joe

  • pages:
  • 1