New Poll Has Likud Topping 30 Seats

Gaza electricity Netanyahu
Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu leads a Likud party meeting at the Knesset. (Yonatan Sindel/Flash90)

The Likud is back on top in the latest poll on how Israelis feel about the political structure of their government. The poll, taken last Thursday by the respected Geocartographia organization, shows the Likud surging ahead of Yesh Atid, which recent polls had shown strengthening. More importantly for the Likud, the poll shows that the right and center-right continue to dominate Israel’s political landscape.

If elections were held now, the Likud would get 31 seats, the poll showed – the first poll in over a year to show the party breaking through 30 Knesset seats. Yair Lapid’s Yesh Atid, meanwhile, falls somewhat compared to recent polls, with 26 seats. Two weeks ago, Yesh Atid was in first place, with 27 seats, compared to 24 for the Likud.

In any event, it is clear that Yesh Atid’s newfound support comes at the expense of Zionist Camp which, after a slight bump when Avi Gabay took over management of the party, has fallen to the levels it was at when MK Yitzchak Herzog was still its titular head (Herzog, as an MK, is still head of the opposition). The poll has Zionist Camp getting just 13 seats.

In the past, increases in the Likud’s strength have come at the expense of other right-wing parties — notably Jewish Home, which, due to the Likud’s last-minute surge in the 2015 elections, only has eight seats in the current Knesset, despite the fact that polls showed the party getting more than 12 seats just days before the election. The current poll shows Jewish Home getting 12 seats if elections were held now.

It is likely that some of the Likud’s increased strength is coming from disillusioned Yesh Atid voters, or even Zionist Camp voters.

The poll also shows Kulanu attaining eight seats, United Torah Judaism with seven, Meretz with six, and Shas and Yisrael Beytenu with four each. The poll also has the United Arab List with only nine seats, a considerable fall from its 13 in the current Knesset. Assuming a coalition of Likud, Jewish Home, UTJ, Shas, Kulanu and Yisrael Beytenu — the makeup of the current government — a Likud-led government would consist of 66 seats, one more than the current governance has, according to the poll’s numbers.