Poll: Right-Wing Bloc at 60, Meretz Off the Map

By Yisrael Price

Head of the Religious Zionist Party MK Bezalel Smotrich leads a faction meeting at the Knesset(Yonatan Sindel/Flash90

YERUSHALAYIM – While a meeting of government ministers and Arab mayors prevailed on Meretz MK Ghaida Rinawie Zoabi to return to the coalition, a poll released on Sunday said that if elections were held now, her party would fail to pass the electoral threshold, leaving her and her colleagues out of the Knesset altogether.

The poll, conducted by Menachem Lazar of Panels Politics for Radio 103 FM, found that the left-wing Meretz would receive only 2.5% of the vote.

At the same time, the poll showed the right-wing bloc pressing its advantage as the coalition barely held together, with only 60 seats to the opposition’s 60 in the Knesset, even after Zoabi’s return.

Under present circumstances, opposition leader Binyamin Netanyahu’s Likud party would get 36 seats, leading a bloc of 60 without the Arab parties. The center-left coalition would win only 53.

Driving the right’s surge was the Religious Zionism party, which would have 9 seats, up from its current 7, making it the third-largest party in the Knesset. In addition, the poll found that if Otzma Yehudit chairman Itamar Ben-Gvir split off from Religious Zionism to run independently, the two parties would win 5 seats each, 10 combined.

Yesh Atid would have 18 seats, while Prime Minister Naftali Bennett’s Yamina party would receive 6, and their partners New Hope and Ra’am would barely pass the electoral threshold with four seats each.

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