Netanyahu Heading for Stalemate in 4th ‘Israel’ Election
By Staff, Agencies
Zionist Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu claimed a "huge win" after initial exit polls put his Likud party in the lead. However, his camp is likely to fall short of a majority, setting the stage for yet another deadlock.
As the polls in the Zionist entity’s fourth election in two years closed on Tuesday, Netanyahu’s political future remained unclear.
Voting stations closed at 10 p.m. occupied Palestine time. Initially, exit polls released by ‘Israeli’ broadcasters projected Netanyahu's right-wing Likud party would take between 31 and 33 seats in the Knesset [Zionist parliament] with rival Lapid Yesh Atid winning 16 to 18 seats.
Early on Monday, however, updated exit polls gave the pro-Netanyahu and the anti-Netanyahu camp more or less equal number of seats which would leave them both without a majority.
Both sides would likely have to court Naftali Bennett, a former Netanyahu ally who now has strained relations with the prime minister. Forecasters suggest Netanyahu could have a tough time building a coalition government.
Numbers were continuing to shift early Wednesday and the exit poll projections could still change. The final results may not be known until later in the week.
With 61 seats needed for an outright majority in the 120-seat Knesset, it could be several days before a Zionist government is formed. Unless the coalition-building talks manage to break the stalemate, the Tel Aviv regime might be headed for yet another vote — an unprecedented fifth consecutive election in the bitterly divided occupation entity.
Based on the initial exit polls, Netanyahu described the election as a "huge win" for the right-wing.
Voters have "given a great victory to the right and to the Likud under my leadership," he claimed in statements on Facebook and Twitter.
However, he did not repeat his claims of victory in the subsequent election night speech.