As Israeli President Reuven Rivlin prepares to assign the mandate to form a government, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is believed to be gaining momentum amid the decision by other members of the Knesset to deny Yair Lapid.
Israeli President Reuven Rivlin is most likely to assign the first mandate to form a government to current Prime Minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, by Wednesday. This comes amid Yair Lapid’s failure to receive enough endorsements to be the frontrunner. The Likud party’s leader reportedly received recommendations from approximately 52 MKs (Members of the Knesset), while Lapid of the Yesh Atid party only received 45.
However, it is believed that it is going to be difficult for Netanyahu to find his way to the 61-seat majority with the Religious Zionist Party refusing to join forces.
The Yesh Atid and Yamina (New Right) parties have begun talks about the potential for a unity government that would result in Yamina’s Naftali Bennett serving as PM for two years, followed by a two-year term from Lapid. That being said, no agreement was made prior to their meeting with President Rivlin today. The sale point of this would-be unity government is said to be its inclusiveness of every angle of politics, right-center-left.
As has been a common strategy of Netanyahu’s opponents, his trial was used against him today by Lapid who said, “Anyone who saw Netanyahu’s reckless performance today understands he can’t carry on in his job. He’s become dangerous to himself, to Israel and to the rule of law. We have an economy that needs taking care of, we have a society that is hurt and aching. People just want politics out of their lives. They want a government that will let them live their lives in peace.”
Ironically, after the last four years, Israel is at peace with more countries in the region than ever before under Netanyahu’s leadership, largely thanks to the Abraham Accords, which was brokered by the previous US administration.
Netanyahu is expected to receive the mandate to form a new government on Tuesday following Israel’s fourth round of elections in less than two years.