An analysis of the eleven polls conducted between Aug 1 and Oct 1 show that Israeli opinion has shifted during the Knesset’s 88-day summer recess. Over the recess the main headlines reflected in the polls involved the domestic social justice tent protests, the Palestinian U.N. statehood bid and the Middle East’s rapid change in the aftermath of the Arab Spring. No polls were conducted in October, so we do not know yet the impact of Gilad Shalit’s release.

Let’s go party by party.

Prime Minister Netanyahu’s ruling Likud party never dipped below 22 seats in the polls, and their 22-seat showing was part of a scenario poll that had the Tent Party winning 20 seats which is highly unlikely. However, the Likud only had one showing over 30 seats, and that was a poll that excluded the non-Jewish vote. Two and a half years ago Likud received 27 seats. This past August and September the party received 26-28 seats in eight of the eleven polls conducted over the two month period.

Kadima, currently with 28 seats, won the most seats in the 2009 election but still found themselves in the opposition. Kadima’s numbers have been sliding from a high of 25 in early August to a low of 13 if former Defense Minister Mofaz defeats Opposition Leader Livni in the Kadima primary.

Foreign Minister Liberman’s Yisrael Beitenu party received 15-18 seats in ten of the eleven polls. The exception was the Jewish vote poll, which gave them only 10, showing the party has a significant amount of non-Jewish support, most likely from the non-Jewish U.S.S.R. immigrants as well as Druze voters thanks to Y.B.’s Druze MK Hamad Amar.

MK Yacimovich has at least temporarily brought Labor back to life. The party captured 13 seats in 2009 and was left with only eight following Defense Minister Barak’s split from the party. In August, before Yacimovich was elected chairwoman, the party polled a high of 11 and a low of seven. After her election Labor is polling at or near the low-mid 20’s.

Shas, currently with 11 seats, polled 12-13 in the four August polls and dropped to 9-10 in the September polls. U.T.J., currently with 5 seats, polled between 4-6 seats in all eleven polls. The National Union, currently with 4 seats, polls 4-5 seats by itself, and 7-9 when merged with Jewish Home. Jewish Home polled at it’s current representation of 3 seats on its own in all but two polls, with a high of 5 in the Jewish only poll.

Meretz, currently with 3 seats, polled between a high of six seats and a low of not passing the threshold in scenario polls where there were newer left-wing alternatives. Barak’s Independence Party, currently with 5 seats following the split from Labor, passed the threshold in just one of the eleven polls. The three Arab parties went from polling 11 (their current representation) in August to 8-9 in September. The most notable result of the Arab parties in the polls is for the mixed Jewish-Arab Communist Hadash Party, which did not pick up even one seat in the Jewish only poll.

A theoretical Tent/Social Justice Party dropped from 20 seats in August to four in September. Other hypothetical scenarios had a Yair Lapid party winning only two seats and an Aryeh Deri party not passing the two-seat threshold. The Green Party passed the threshold in two polls. The Youth Party failed to pass the threshold when polled.

Poll Current #1 #2 #3 #4 #5 #6 #7 #8 #9 #10 #11
Kadima 28 25 19 25 18 22 24 16 18 M 13 L 17 18
Likud 27 26 22 29 27 25 24 28 26 28 27 32
Yisrael Beitenu 15 15 15 16 16 15 16 15 18 17 17 10
Shas 11 12 12 13 12 9 10 N/A 9 9 9 9
Labor 8 11 7 11 10 Y 22 P 18 25 22 21 19 26
Yahadut Hatorah/ UTJ 5 6 6 5 6 6 6 N/A 6 6 6 4
National Union 4 5 5 4 4 *9 *9 N/A *7 4 4 4
Jewish Home 3 3 3 3 4 *9 *9 N/A *7 3 3 5
Meretz 3 4 0 4 6 4 5 N/A 5 5 4 6
Arab Parties 11 11 11 9 11 8 8 N/A 9 9 9 0
Independence 5 0 0 1 3 0 0 N/A 0 1.5 1.5 0
Social Justice/Tent Party 0 N/A 20 N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A 4
Green Party 0 2 0 N/A 3 N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A 1
Yair Lapid Party 0 N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A 2 2 N/A
Aryeh Deri Party 0 N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A 1.5 1.5 N/A
Youth Party 0 N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A 1
Poll #1: Aug 1 Jpost A
Poll #2: Aug 1 Jpost B
Poll #3: Aug 3 Makor Rishon
Poll #4: Aug 31 Makor Rishon
Poll #5: Sep 13 Dialog A
Poll #6: Sep 13 Dialog B
Poll #7: Sep 21 Chan 99
Poll #8: Sep 25 Haaretz
Poll #9: Sep 26 Chan 10 A
Poll #10: Sep 26 Chan 10 B
Poll #11: Sep 30 Jewish Only
* = N.U. and J.H. together
Y = Yacimovich
P = Peretz
M = Mofaz
L = Livni

Parties must receive 2% of the valid votes (equivalent to 2.4 seats) to pass required threshold and receive Knesset representation.

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