Tag Archive: Knesset Jeremy


Analysts, pundits, experts, commentators, journalists and critics can decide to grade the winners and losers but polling is the best way to take a snapshot at public opinion. Polling is not an exact science, and margins of error are involved, however it is a better indicator than looking into a crystal ball or making predictions from your gut.

Four of the nine premier polling agencies Panels, Dialog, Smith & Geocartography conducted polls mid-week following the end of Operation Protective Edge and this is what they found:

Likud (G-32, S-28, P-27, D-26) – Winner

Prime Minister Netanyahu might have performed badly in most ‘additional questions’ sections, but he remains on top in terms of who is most fit to be Prime Minister and Likud remains the largest party. The Geocartography poll of 32 seats is most likely wishful thinking. Likud might be tied for largest party in the current Knesset with 19 seats, but Likud is the largest party by a safe margin in the three realistic sounding polls of 28-26 seats. The public still supports the Prime Minister. His main problem is the Likud membership who is looking at options of replacing the 3-term Prime Minister. Will he survive the infighting?

Bayit Yehudi (P-19,G-18,D-17,S-14) – Winner

Economy Minister Naftali Bennett’s Bayit Yehudi Party polled in second place in five of the six polls conducted during Operation Protective Edge. The Smith poll during the operation placed Bayit Yehudi third & Labor second.  He remained in second place in the four polls taken after the operation, although in the latest Smith poll he tied for second place with Labor. As far as polls go, Bennett emerged as the clear winner of this operation. He jumped from being the fourth largest party to second place in the polls. In many polls he also finished second in the question of ‘Who is most fit to be Prime Minister?’ Many pundits doubt a nationalist politician with a yarmulke can maintain the success and polling status as the #2 party. In the meantime the polls keep proving those pundits wrong. Can the freshman MK maintain his success and actually lead his party to achieve second place in the election?

Labor (P-15, D&S-14, G-12) – Loser

Opposition Leader Herzog has failed to gain momentum. It is difficult being the leader of the left during a war. Labor is the third largest party with 15 seats, but the Geocartography poll has Labor in fourth place. Although he was statesmanlike during most of the campaign, towards the end he called for elections at the end of the operation. Calling for elections in the middle of a war might go down as one of his major gaffes and could be used by Likud in future campaign videos. Herzog will be Labor’s ‘Prime Ministerial candidate’ for the next elections. For now he can’t improve on Shelly Yachmovich’s 2013 showing of 15 seats which makes him the clear loser of the operation. Will he be able to turn it around?

Yisrael Beitenu (G-17, S-12, D-11, P-9) – Loser

Foreign Minister Liberman’s Yisrael Beitenu is polling at third-fifth place. The 17 seats from the Geocartography poll seem a bit too high. The other three polls of 9-12 seats seem more likely. These numbers are not good for Liberman who currently has 12 seats. He won 15 seats in 2009 and 12 seats in 2006. Liberman chose to split off from the joint Likud Beitenu Faction days before the war. This is a losing situation for a veteran right-wing leader who is polling lower than his election results of the last decade during the longest operation in the last 40 years. If a right-wing leader doesn’t peak during wartime, when will he peak?

Yesh Atid (P&D-12, S&G-9) – Loser

Finance Minister Yair Lapid has been in trouble in the polls for a long time. His financial policy has angered most Israelis. His irresponsible quotes during the war did not help him, such as saying the war would not have an impact on the budget and promising not to raise taxes before he knew when the war would end and what the overall cost would be. The Geocartography poll has freshman Yesh Atid dropping from the second largest party to the sixth largest party, behind the UTJ party that Lapid loathes. This is the guy who was polling around 30 seats over a year ago. If he fails to pass his 0% VAT housing reform program, will anyone remember his Charedi draft law?

United Torah Judaism (G-10, D-8, S&P-7) – Winner

Israel just went through 50 days of war and UTJ remained steady and that is a win for them. The Geocartography poll showing of 10 seats is wishful thinking. Maintaining their position in the polls of 7-8 seats is impressive considering this a party that prioritizes Torah learning in Yeshiva over serving in the army. Their arch nemesis Lapid chose to threaten Hamas political leaders instead of turning public debate towards a large sector of society that was not putting on army uniforms. Party activists pride themselves that in two polls the Ashkenazi UTJ finished higher than the Sephardi Shas. Can the Lithuanians and Hassidic sects remain united for another election?

Shas (S-9, P-8, D&G-7) – Winner

Before the war it looked like Shas was about to split into two. Rabbi Ovadia Yosef is gone. Aryeh Deri & Eli Yishai infighting was becoming too difficult for either side to hide anymore. Popular #3 Ariel Attias decided to resign from Knesset, rumors started to link Attias to Kahlon. Shas was dropping in the polls and one would expect that in war time most of their voters would move over to Likud. Instead Deri & Yishai stopped fighting publicly and both took a lower profile. With the internal chaos going on before the war, a loss of up to four seats is a win for an opposition party focused on religion & economics during war time. Now that Operation Protective Edge is over, will Operation Split Shas continue?

Meretz (P-9, D&S-7, G-6) – Loser

Remember when Meretz was consistently polling in the double digits two months ago? Well those days are over. The party that is to the left of Labor has lost their momentum and possibly their direction. Many people support Meretz’s domestic politics but find it hard to vote for the party during a time when diplomatic & national defense issues are in the headlines. The MKs did not speak in a single voice and it was not clear to many where the party stood on many issues related to the operation. Meretz won 6 seats in the last election with a 4.55% showing that included 14% of the Tel Aviv vote. Will Meretz be able to repeat double digit numbers in Tel Aviv following the sirens of Protective Edge?

Hadash (D-6, S-5, P&G-4) – Winner

The future of the smaller parties has been cast in doubt with the raising of the new threshold to 3.25%/4 seats. The ability of Hadash, a joint Arab-Jewish Party to remain above the threshold in all polls makes them a winner. Polling at 5 or 6 seats is highly unusual for the party. It is possible they were able to take away votes from Meretz.

Balad (G-5, D-4, S&P-3) – Winner

The Balad MKs went to Qatar to meet with former leader MK Bishara who is wanted on charges of treason in Israel for terrorist actions during the Second Lebanon War. They are winners considering they were able to go on the trip, come back and remain MKs, while enjoying a slight bump in the polls. On the other hand, 3 seats will not cut it anymore under the new threshold.

Livni/Movement (S,D&P-4, G-0) – Loser

Justice Minister Livni is barely able to pass the threshold in three polls and in the fourth polls she is not able to. Rumors of her MKs making preparations for the next elections in different parties does not help her either. Few people think this party will make it to the next elections and the public seems to agree.

Ra’am-Ta’al (D4, S&P-3, G-0) – Loser

Ra’am-Ta’al received more votes than Hadash, Balad and Kadima in Jan 2013. Yet, they fail to pass the threshold in 3 of the 4 polls, and barely escape it in the fourth. Lucky for them there will be attempts to merge with Balad and maybe Hadash.

Kadima 0 seats in all polls – Loser

Remember when Shaul Mofaz was Defense Minister and a member of the Security Cabinet? I’m not sure many do.

Kahlon (Smith Poll 5 seats) – Loser

Kahlon is an economic guy. He can’t announce a new party when security and defense issues are at the top of the news.

  • I’d like to see Maagar Mochot, New Wave, Midgam, Teleseker & Dahaf polls to get a clearer picture but four out of nine is not that bad. I’ll take what I can get.

Geocartography conducted a poll of 500 people with a 4.5% error rate that was published by Jerusalem Post & Maariv on August 29th 2014.

Current Knesset seats in [brackets]

32 [19] Likud

18 [12] Bayit Yehudi

17 [12] Yisrael Beitenu

12 [15] Labor

10 [07] Yahadut Hatorah/UTJ

09 [19] Yesh Atid

07 [11] Shas

06 [06] Meretz

05 [03] Balad

04 [04] Hadash

00 [06] Movement

00 [04] Ra’am-Ta’al

00 [02] Kadima

84 [61] Right-Religious

36 [59] Center-Left-Arab

Note: This poll was conducted according new 3.25% threshold.

* Reminder: MK Shama (Likud) resignation has lowered Likud from 20 seats to 19 seats. MK Miller (Yisrael Beitenu) who took the seat raises his party from 11 seats to 12 seats.

Smith conducted a poll that was published by Globes on August 28th 2014.

 

Current Knesset seats in [brackets]

 

28 [19] Likud

14 [12] Bayit Yehudi

14 [15] Labor

12 [12] Yisrael Beitenu

09 [19] Yesh Atid

09 [11] Shas

07 [07] Yahadut Hatorah/UTJ

07 [06] Meretz

05 [04] Hadash

05 [--] New Kahlon Party

04 [06] Movement

03 [04] Ra’am-Ta’al

03 [03] Balad

00 [02] Kadima

 

75 [61] Right-Religious

45 [59] Center-Left-Arab

 

Note: This poll was conducted according to old 2% threshold and not the new 3.25% threshold.

 

* Reminder: MK Shama (Likud) resignation has lowered Likud from 20 seats to 19 seats. MK Miller (Yisrael Beitenu) who took the seat raises his party from 11 seats to 12 seats.

Dialog conducted a poll that was published by Haaretz on August 28th 2014.

Current Knesset seats in [brackets]

26 [19] Likud
17 [12] Bayit Yehudi
14 [15] Labor
12 [19] Yesh Atid
11 [12] Yisrael Beitenu
08 [07] Yahadut Hatorah/UTJ
07 [11] Shas
07 [06] Meretz
06 [04] Hadash
04 [06] Movement
04 [04] Ra’am-Ta’al
04 [03] Balad
00 [02] Kadima

69 [61] Right-Religious
51 [59] Center-Left-Arab

Note: This poll was conducted according to new 3.25% threshold.

* Reminder: MK Shama (Likud) resignation has lowered Likud from 20 seats to 19 seats. MK Miller (Yisrael Beitenu) who took the seat raises his party from 11 seats to 12 seats.

Panels conducted a poll that was broadcast by Knesset Channel on August 28th 2014.

Current Knesset seats in [brackets]

27 [19] Likud
19 [12] Bayit Yehudi
15 [15] Labor
12 [19] Yesh Atid
09 [12] Yisrael Beitenu
09 [06] Meretz
08 [11] Shas
07 [07] Yahadut Hatorah/UTJ
04 [06] Movement
04 [04] Hadash
03 [04] Ra’am-Ta’al
03 [03] Balad
00 [02] Kadima

70 [61] Right-Religious
50 [59] Center-Left-Arab

Note: This poll was conducted according to the old 2% threshold, instead of the new 3.25% threshold.

* Reminder: MK Shama (Likud) resignation has lowered Likud from 20 seats to 19 seats. MK Miller (Yisrael Beitenu) who took the seat raises his party from 11 seats to 12 seats.

Knesset Jeremy Analysis: Prime Minister Netanyahu’s Likud remains on top with 27 seats and Economy Minister Bennett’s Bayit Yehudi remains in the second position with 19 seats. Opposition Leader Herzog’s Labor is third with 15 seats and Finance Minister Lapid’s Yesh Atid is fourth with 12 seats. Foreign Minister Liberman’s Yisrael Beitenu and left-wing Meretz follow with nine seats each.

Additional Questions:

Which candidate is most fit to be Prime Minister?

26% Prime Minister Netanyahu, 14% Economy Minister Bennett, 11% Oppositon Leader Herzog, 9% Foreign Minister Liberman, 4% Justice Minister Livni, 2% Defense Minister Yaalon, 2% Finance Minister Lapid.

Panels conducted a poll that was broadcast by Knesset Channel on August 14th 2014.

Current Knesset seats in [brackets]

28 [19] Likud

19 [12] Bayit Yehudi

15 [15] Labor

11 [19] Yesh Atid

10 [06] Meretz

09 [12] Yisrael Beitenu

07 [11] Shas

07 [07] Yahadut Hatorah/UTJ

04 [06] Movement

04 [04] Hadash

03 [04] Ra’am-Ta’al

03 [03] Balad

00 [02] Kadima

70 [61] Right-Religious

50 [59] Center-Left-Arab

Note: This poll was conducted according to the old 2% threshold, instead of the new 3.25% threshold.
* MK Shama (Likud) resignation has lowered Likud from 20 seats to 19 seats. MK Miller (Yisrael Beitenu) who took the seat raises his party from 11 seats to 12 seats.

Knesset Jeremy Analysis: Prime Minister Netanyahu’s Likud Party remains on top with 28 seats, a drop of two seats from Panels poll two weeks ago. Economy Minister Naftali Bennett’s Bayit Yehudi Party scores 19 seats in this poll, the party has finished second place in five of the six polls conducted since the start of Operation Protective Edge (Dialog, Smith, Midgam and Panels). Opposition Leader Herzog’s Labor Party is in third place with 15 seats. Foreign Minister Avigdor Liberman’s Yisrael Beitenu finishes in sixth place with nine seats, behind Finance Minister Yair Lapid’s Yesh Atid Party 11 seats and Meretz’s ten seats.

Good news for Prime Minister Netanyahu: The right-religious bloc remains strong with 70 seats.
Bad news for Prime Minister Netanyahu: The internal Likud politics (Sa’ar, Erdan, Danon, Feiglin, etc) are currently a huge headache and it is no sure thing he would be re-nominated within the Likud.

Additional Questions:

Are you pleased with the conduct of each person during Operation Protective Edge?

Chief of Staff Gantz: 77% Pleased, 19% Not pleased
Defense Minister Yaalon: 57% Pleased, 36% Not pleased
Prime Minister Netanyahu: 56% Pleased, 39% Not pleased
Economy Minister Bennett: 50% Pleased, 43% Not pleased
Foreign Minister Liberman: 40% Pleased, 54% Not pleased
Justice Minister Livni: 39% Pleased, 50% Not pleased
Finance Minister Lapid: 35% Pleased, 57% Not pleased

Are you pleased with the conduct of Prime Minister Netanyahu during the  Cairo negotiations?

52% No 33% Yes

Should Israel cooperate with UN inquiry commission?

55% No, 35% Yes

What level of damage will be caused to Israel following UN inquiry commission?

48% No significant damage, 25% significant damage, 15% No damage at all

Will the UN inquiry commission be fair or are the conclusions known ahead of time?

91% Conclusions leaning towards the Palestinians, 2% Conclusions will be fair

Should Israel conduct direct negotiations with Hamas regarding the Gaza Strip?

69% No, 21% Yes

What affect, if any has Operation Protective Shield had on Israeli deterrence vs Hamas?

35% No difference, 30% Deterrence was damaged, 28% Improvement in deterrence

Should Israel agree to ease the blockade on Gaza?

76% No, 18% Yes

Should Operation Protective Edge be upgraded to war status?

71% Yes, 19% No

Knesset Jeremy Analysis: The IDF COS & Defense Minister score higher than Prime Minister Netanyahu. Bennett outmaneuvers other coalition party leaders (Liberman, Lapid & Livni) as the only party leader with higher favorable numbers (50%) than unfavorable numbers (43%). Israelis have a clear feeling on proposed UN commission.

* Panel Politics published a day later (Aug 15) on their Facebook page the results of an additional question that had not been broadcast by the Knesset Channel.

Which candidate is most fit to be Prime Minister?

30% Prime Minister Netanyahu, 16% Economy Minister Bennett, 11% Oppositon Leader Herzog, 6% Foreign Minister Liberman, 6% Justice Minister Livni, 3% Defense Minister Yaalon, 3% Finance Minister Lapid. 25% – None of them.

Midgam conducted a poll of 500 people that was broadcast by Channel 2 on Aug 7 2014.

Current Knesset seats in [brackets]

23 [19] Likud

15 [12] Bayit Yehudi

14 [15] Labor

12 [11] Yisrael Beitenu

10 [19] Yesh Atid

08 [11] Shas

07 [07] Yahadut Hatorah/UTJ

07 [07] Ra’am-Ta’al and Balad

07 [--] Kachalon

06 [06] Meretz

06 [06] Movement

05 [04] Hadash

00 [02] Kadima

72 [61] Right-Religious-Kachalon

48 [59] Center-Left-Arab

Note: This poll was conducted according to the new 3.25% threshold. Currently Ra’am-Ta’al and Balad are separate factions.

Additional Questions:

Who is most fit to serve as Prime Minister?

38% Netanyahu, 11% Bennett, 9% Liberman, 9% Herzog, 8% Livni, 3% Kachalon, 3% Lapid

Are you pleased with Netanyahu’s conduct of war?

58% Yes, 37% No

Knesset Jeremy Analysis: The Netanyahu-Liberman-Bennett trio captures 50 seats in this poll. The three, along with Herzog are among the top 4 parties and the top 4 Prime Minister candidates. For now, the right seems to have clearly benefited from the war.

Panels conducted a poll that was broadcast by Knesset Channel on July 31st 2014.

Current Knesset seats in [brackets]

30 [20] Likud

18 [12] Bayit Yehudi

15 [15] Labor

10 [19] Yesh Atid

10 [06] Meretz

09 [11] Shas

08 [11] Yisrael Beitenu

07 [07] Yahadut Hatorah/UTJ

04 [06] Movement

03 [04] Hadash

03 [04] Ra’am-Ta’al

03 [03] Balad

00 [02] Kadima

72 [61] Right-Religious

48 [59] Center-Left-Arab

Note: This poll was conducted according to the old 2% threshold, instead of the new 3.25% threshold.

Knesset Jeremy Analysis: Prime Minister Netanyahu’s Likud is on top with 30 seats. Economy Minister Naftali Bennett’s Bayit Yehudi comes in second with 18 seats in the Panels poll, compared to 13 seats in the Smith poll. Foreign Minister Avigdor Liberman’s Yisrael Beitenu has 8 seats in the Panels poll, compared to 13 seats in the Smith poll. The explanation of this unusual 5-seat difference between Panels & Smith in regards to recent polls for both parties following the Likud Beitenu split can be explained simply that most likely the actual result is in the middle of both polling systems margin of error.

Smith conducted a poll that was published by Globes on July 31st 2014.

Current Knesset seats in [brackets]

31 [20] Likud

14 [15] Labor

13 [12] Bayit Yehudi

13 [11] Yisrael Beitenu

11 [19] Yesh Atid

08 [11] Shas

07 [07] Yahadut Hatorah/UTJ

07 [06] Meretz

06 [--] Kachalon Party

04 [04] Hadash

04 [04] Ra’am-Ta’al

03 [03] Balad

00 [06] Movement

00 [02] Kadima

78 [61] Right-Religious-Kachalon

43 [59] Center-Left-Arab

Note: There are 120 seats, this poll comes out to 121 seats, it is not clear which party would lose a seat.

Knesset Jeremy Analysis: Prime Minister Netanyahu’s Likud has a great showing with 31 seats, the same number he won 18 months ago with an alliance with Liberman’s Yisrael Beitenu. The split works out well for both sides as Liberman grows from 11 seats to 13. The combined Likud-Yisrael Beitenu combo of 44 seats is a collective growth of 13 seats. This poll allows for a Netanyahu-Liberman-Bennett-Kachalon coalition of 63 seats, without the need for the Shas, UTJ or Yesh Atid parties.

Panels conducted a poll that was broadcast by Knesset Channel on July 17th 2014.

Current Knesset seats in [brackets]

24 [20] Likud

19 [12] Bayit Yehudi

15 [15] Labor

11 [19] Yesh Atid

10 [06] Meretz

08 [11] Yisrael Beitenu

07 [07] Yahadut Hatorah/UTJ

06 [11] Shas

06 [--] Kachalon Party

05 [06] Movement

03 [04] Hadash

03 [03] Balad

03 [04] Ra’am-Ta’al

00 [02] Kadima

70 [61] Right-Religious-Kachalon

50 [59] Center-Left-Arab

Knesset Jeremy Analysis: Prime Minister Netanyahu’s Likud remains number 1. Current trends continue, Bayit Yehudi remains in second and receives 19 seats in this poll. Center-left bloc continues their drop, as expected during wartime. Kachalon is included in this poll, as is the old 2% threshold. The larger parties would see their seats increase if you did not include Kachalon and the poll was conducted with the new 3.25% threshold.

10 Additional Questions:

Should we conduct a ground operation in Gaza now?

63% Yes, 27% No

Do you believe that Israel can topple the Hamas regime in Gaza?

58% Yes, 35% No

Do you think that business owners that sustained damage during Operation Protective Edge will receive adequate financial compensation from the government?

55% No, 33% Yes

Are you pleased or not pleased from the conduct of the following people during Operation Protective Edge?

IDF Chief of Staff Benny Gantz: Pleased 75%, Not Pleased 14%
Defense Minister Moshe Yaalon: Pleased 59%, Not Pleased 32%
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu: Pleased 53%, Not Pleased 43%
Economy Minister Naftali Bennett: Pleased 43%, Not Pleased 48%
Foreign Minister Avigdor Liberman: Pleased 38%, Not Pleased 57%
Finance Minister Yair Lapid: Pleased 33%, Not Pleased 52%

Other factors such as Justice Minister Livni & Opposition Leader Herzog were not polled.

Should the Prime Minister form a national unity government with the opposition parties to strengthen him during this operation?

60% No, 28% Yes

Did Prime Minister Netanyahu act correctly by firing Deputy Defense Minister Danon following Danon’s comments against the security cabinet decision?

Acted correctly 51%, did not act correctly 33%.

Among Likud voters: 54% Acted correctly, 24% did not act correctly.

Are Foreign Minister Liberman’s comments against the Prime Minister, against the security cabinet decision for a ceasefire and other decisions appropriate or not appropriate?

61% Not appropriate, 29% appropriate.

Is Israeli Hasbara succeeding in achieving international support for Operation Protective Edge?

51% No, 41% Yes

Should the Israeli government at some point work towards a ceasefire?

65% No, 27% Yes

Have you been in an area where a siren sounded since the beginning of Operation Protective Edge?

87% Yes, 13% No

Knesset Jeremy Analysis: 87% of Israelis have been under a siren, 65% reject a ceasefire, 63% support a ground operation, 58% feel IDF can topple Hamas. 51% support Netanyahu decision to fire Danon and 61% find Liberman’s behavior not appropriate.

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