Rivlin to announce Likud coalition government approval on Wednesday following consultations with winning parties; The New Right party does not gain enough votes to enter new government; Reports claim Justice Minister may be offered position under Netanyahu’s new government.
Israel’s President Reuven Rivlin began consultations with Israeli MK’s, parties, and candidates on Monday ahead of his selection and announcement set for Wednesday. The process follows the final counting of votes, with Prime Minister Netanyahu’s Likud winning the majority of votes and mandates. Initial reports set his party at 35 mandates, tied with the Blue and White party, however, his seats rose to 36 after soldier’s votes were counted late last week. The Blue and White party’s leader, former IDF Chief of Staff Benny Gantz, recently conceded to Netanyahu and congratulated him.
The president is expected to assign Prime Minister Netanyahu and his party, Likud, to begin forming a coalition government with a 28-day deadline. In the event the deadline cannot be made, they will receive a two-week extension, however, the majority of right-wing, religious parties have already confirmed a coalition government under Netanyahu. He is currently one mandate short of a majority at 60 mandates.
Following the tally of final votes, the New Right party under Justice Minister Ayelet Shaked and Education Minister Naftali Bennett did not meet the threshold of votes needed. Their party will not sit in the 21 Knesset, but reports claim Netanyahu may appoint Shaked to a government position under the new coalition. The two leaders will reportedly split and the recently established party may be dissolved.
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