Poll Shows Blue and White Voter Support Soft, Likud’s Solid

YERUSHALAYIM -
Benny Gantz gives a statement to the media in Tel Aviv on February 28, 2019. (Flash90)

The race for the Prime Minister’s Office is close, if polls are to be believed – including the latest poll by the Camilla Fuchs organization, taken on behalf of Haaretz. That poll shows Blue and White achieving 32 seats in the Knesset, with the Likud trailing slightly, with 29 seats. Overall, however, parties identified with the right, including the chareidi parties, would garner 63 seats, enough to form a narrow coalition.

The new poll shows Blue and White weakening, but a more worrying data point for the party is that, according to the poll, even those who believe they are going to vote Blue and White are not sure if they are going to on Election Day – while a large majority of Likud supporters intend to see their party through to the end. Only 38 percent of Blue and White supporters said they were “positive” they would vote for the party, while 69 percent of Likud supporters said they would.

Meretz and Kulanu also may have problems getting the vote out; only 29 percent and 23 percent of those polled who said they would vote for each party respectively are positive they will put that party’s slip into the ballot box on Election Day.

That Blue and White’s support is shaky is evident from another question: If you could vote for a party in addition to your primary preference, which would it be? 29 percent of Blue and White voters said they would not make an additional choice, but 23 percent said they would vote Labor, while 10 percent said Kulanu. 22 percent said “other.” Among Likud voters, 52 percent said they would not make a second choice – and those who did would mostly choose between the United Right List (13 percent) and the New Right party (11 percent). Only 2 percent would choose Blue and White.

Experts said that the apparent soft support for Blue and White could turn into a major problem for the party. If voters are not convinced that they want to vote for Blue and White, they may turn to alternatives – or worse, not show up at the poll, if they don’t feel committed to Blue and White, but are not interested in supporting other parties.

Among the other parties in the Ha’aretz poll, Labor would get 10 seats, the United Right List 8, New Right and United Torah Judaism 7 each, Shas 5, and all the following 4: Kulanu, Meretz, Balad-Ra’am, and Zehut. Taken together, the parties identified with the right, including Moshe Feiglin’s Zehut, would be able to form a coalition of 63 MKs. With that, Feiglin has said that he is “not in the pocket” of Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu – and over the weekend, Ra’am-Ta’al head Ahmed Tibi said that he would not recommend Blue and White head Benny Gantz when he conferred with President Reuven Rivlin after the elections.