The final results of Israel’s elections were published today, after the soldiers’ votes have been counted.
Likud (Benyamin Netanyahu)- 30
Jewish Home (Naftali Bennet)- 8
Yisrael Beiteinu (Avigdor Lieberman)- 6
Kulanu (Moshe Kahlon)- 10
Yesh Atid (Yair Lapid)- 11
Labor (Yitzhak Hertzog and Tzipi Livni)- 24
Meretz (Zehava Gal’on)- 5
Shas (Arie Deri)- 7
Yahadut Hatorah- United Torah Judaism (Yaakov Litzman)- 6
Joint Arab list- 13
The next step is for President Reuven Rivlin to meet with the leaders of all the parties, who will recommend their candidate for Prime Minister. Presumably, the right-wing parties, the Ultra Orthodox parties and Kulanu will recommend Netanyahu while the Left-wing parties and Yesh Atid will recommend Hertzog. The Arab party will probably not recommend either.
Based on the recommendations of the party leaders, as well as the fact that Likud is the largest party by far, Rivlin will then ask Benyamin Netanyahu to form a coalition. He will then have 28 days, with the option for an additional 14 to negotiate with the other party leaders in order to form a majority coalition. The negotiations will include the main policy lines of the future government, as well as what governmental positions will be handed out to the members of each party to join.
In the unlikely event that Netanyahu is unable to come to an agreement with the other party leaders in order to form a majority within the allotted time, the task of forming a coalition will pass to Yitzhak Hertzog. If neither of them are able to form a coalition, we may find ourselves with a second election.
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