Poll Gives Far-Right Parties a Shot at Knesset

Moshe Feiglin, head of Zehut (Identity) party. (Gili Yaari /Flash90/File)

Two far-right parties that have been predicted to fall by the wayside in the September elections seem to have a fair chance of making it into the Knesset after all, upending all predictions, according to a poll released on Tuesday night.

If elections were held now, Zehut would receive 2.9 percent of the vote and Otzma Yehudit 2.7 percent. Although 3.25 is needed to clear the electoral threshold, that could happen.

One reason is that Channel 12 poll’s margin of error is 4.4 percent—which means that the parties could get enough to carry them over the threshold, into the Knesset and a Likud-led coalition.

A second reason is that there is reason to believe, says The Times of Israel, that support for Otzma has grown, and if that is so, and the trend continues, it could make it over 3.25.

Zehut, on the other hand, was about the same as its showing in April.

If either one or both parties makes it to the Knesset, Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu’s chances of forming a coalition could improve markedly. In the meantime, Likud and Yamina (formerly United Right) are writing off tens of thousands of right-wing votes that will go Otzma and Zehut, for nought.

Otherwise, the parties stand about where they were in recent polls. Likud and Blue and White have 30 and 29 seats, respectively. Yamina and the Arab Joint List both get 11 seats. Yisrael Beytenu 10. United Torah Judaism and Shas 8 and 7. Labor-Gesher and the Democratic Camp get 7 each.

But, again, those rankings could change significantly if Zehut and Otzma Yehudit do better than has been expected.

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