The final Knesset Jeremy Polling Average for 2019 is here:

The final Knesset Jeremy Phase 1 (Knesset Election) Prediction Analysis

Last night I posted my Phase 1 Prediction Analysis:

38 Likud

35 Blue & White

11 Joint List


9 Shas

7 Yamina

6 Yisrael Beitenu

5 Labor

0 (3) Democratic Union

0 (3) Otzma

  • The margin of error is 3 seats.

Today I am posting my Phase 2 Prediction Analysis:

Based on the Phase 1 predictions these are the three most likely scenarios for Phase 2 based on the math. Remember, President Rivlin is on record that if a Prime Minister candidate receives 61 or more nominations in the President’s Residence that he will grant them the chance to form the next government.

#1 Path to a Netanyahu Coalition:

63 nominations for Netanyahu: 38 Likud, 9 UTJ, 9 Shas, 7 Yamina

40 nominations for Gantz: 35 Blue & White, 5 Labor

17 Won’t nominate: 11 Joint List, 6 Yisrael Beitenu

#2 Path to a Gantz Coalition:

61 nominations for Gantz: 35 Blue & White, 11 Joint List, 6 Yisrael Beitenu, 5 Labor, *4 Meretz

59 nominations for Netanyahu: *37 Likud, *8 UTJ, *8 Shas, *6 Yamina

#3 Path to a National Unity (Netanyahu-Gantz) Coalition:

73 nominations: 38 Likud, 35 Blue & White

The 3 possible paths:

Path #1 is the most likely based on my model and indeed the most ideal for the Prime Minister. In this scenario the four lists who have made public commitments to endorse Netanyahu in Phase 2 receive 61+ seats.

Path #2 is less likely. In this scenario has 61 nominations because Democratic Union passes the electoral threshold at the expense of four seats being lost by the right. Additionally, both Yisrael Beitenu & The Joint List nominate Gantz. This is a theoretical scenario that can be taken into account within the margin of error. In this scenario Gantz would need to have UTJ & Shas replace The Joint List in order to actually form a coalition. How would he juggle UTJ & Lapid, Lieberman & Yaalon, Shas & Meretz? Well, as I said this is a less likely scenario.

Path #3 is the least likely. Historically, Presidents have only pursued national unity governments when neither side has a pathway to 61.

Timeline between Phase 1 and 2, and exactly how Phase 2 works:

Tuesday at 10 PM Israel time the voting will end and election will be over. Those who enter the polling station before 10 PM will still be allowed to vote. Each polling station will have a committee of three people, representing three different parties and those three people will tally the votes by hand. The party representatives will text the results to their headquarters so that the Party Leaders know the results before the television journalists. The official results will be entered into the computer and published on the Central Elections Committee website as the night goes on. Exit polls are closed at 8 PM and therefore will not include trends that affect the voting in the closing hours. The media focus will be on the exit polls until the middle of the night when a good percentage of the vote will have been counted.

By the morning we should have most of the votes in and the Phase 1 results should be rather clear. The “double-envelope” votes will not be included in these initial results. These are votes by citizens who voted overseas or in Israeli army bases, specialized handicap stations, hospitals, jails or polling station committee members. These votes will be counted afterwards in the Knesset itself. Expect a slight shift of a seat-or-two in the final Phase 1 results after the double-envelope votes are counted. This becomes particularly interesting for the parties that are close to the electoral threshold.

The unofficial negotiations that are conducted between Phase 1 and Phase 2 have almost always enabled one of the Prime Minister candidates to reach enough support to get the first crack at forming a government. President Rivlin is expected to meet with the Knesset factions in an unofficial capacity after the election results are clear. It is possible that Central Elections Committee Chairman Justice Meltzer does not allow Rivlin to hold the consolations until the results are certified which is eight days after the election. The parties visit the President in order of party size. The law does not take the size of a party into account in terms of mandating who the President should select to form the next government. The law requires President Rivlin to sit with each of the newly elected lists before making a decision on who should get the first crack at forming a new government. Rivlin will make an announcement after all of the nominations are in. When the newly elected Knesset will be sworn in we will not yet have a new government at that date, but we should know who will get the first crack at putting together the next government.


Bottom line my prediction is that it will not be in President Rivlin’s hands. Someone is going to get a majority and the most likely candidate is Netanyahu. By law, in the event no one gets 61 seats, Rivlin can determine based on his own considerations “who has the best chance at forming a coalition”. This scenario seems unlikely based on the current projections. In each of the cases where this scenario did occur the President presented the mandate to whoever had the most seats even if that candidate failed to reach 61.

It is still possible that even if Netanyahu is nominated in Phase 2 that he doesn’t reach Phase 3 and that most likely means that Gantz gets a nod to be the second person to try Phase 2, although this option is highly unlikely in the case that Netanyahu gets a minimum of 61 recommendations.

If both Netanyahu and Gantz fail in Phase 2 are we headed to a third election? No. The law does grant a third candidate the chance to form a government if the first two candidates are not able to form a coalition. In this scenario any MK can present 61 MK signatures to the President and will be granted the chance to form a coalition. In this “wild west” scenario any MK can break with party lines and sign for whichever candidate he or she chooses. The President cannot choose the third candidate and he cannot force upon the sides to take upon themselves a national unity government. The rules to each scenario can be found in Basic Law: The Government

The rest of the KnessetJeremy schedule:

To all of my loyal readers in Israel – Please exercise your democratic right and vote!