Today’s poll, December 8th

Posted: December 9th, 2008 | Author: | Filed under: elections, Polls | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment »

We don’t have many polls these days. It seems that the media is waiting for the primaries season to end before putting more money into new polls. Labor had its primaries last week. The Likud had theirs yesterday. Kadima will elect its candidates next week.

So we have only one poll today, from the Channel 2 web site. Their pollster, “Panels LTD” is using only web based polls, as opposed to the telephone polls most pollsters in Israel use. It’s not clear how credible this method is, and they get some strange results (last week they had Labor with 6 MKs). I will post their polls here from time to time, and we will be able to compare them with other pollsters, and of course, with the actual results of the election.

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It could get even worst for the left

Posted: November 27th, 2008 | Author: | Filed under: elections, The Left | Tags: , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment »

Truth is, the Left-Center block might do considerably worst than expected in the coming election, due to lost votes.

When a party running for election does no’t reach the 2% (of all legal votes) threshold – which equals 2.4 MKs – that the party doesn’t get a seat in the Knesset, and all it’s votes are then lost. At the moment, the bigger danger is for the left, which might lose as many as 6 MKs due to lost votes.

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Today’s Polls, November 20th

Posted: November 20th, 2008 | Author: | Filed under: Polls | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | Comments Off

We have two new polls today, both of them show the Likud continuing to gain momentum. Kadima weakened a bit, but the big story is the total meltdown of the Labor party. The Labor, which has 19 MKs currently, will have 10 MKs in the next Knesset according to Haaretz’s poll, and as little as 8 on Yedioth Ahronoth’s poll. Less than Liberman’s “Israel Beitenu”, less than Shas.
Both polls were conducted a few days after Netanyahu has presented his new “dream team”, which includes former ministers Dan Meridor and Bennie Begin, and former IDF Chief of Staff Moshe “Bugy” Yaalon. With all of them on board, the Likud looks fresh enough to capture some of the “change” spirit everybody is craving for latly. Kadima has no answer for now, but the campaign only started.

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Today’s Poll, November 15

Posted: November 15th, 2008 | Author: | Filed under: Polls | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | Comments Off

We have one poll this weekend, done by the free daily paper “Israel Hayom”.
86 days before the election, we are beginning to see the Likud, with all it’s new celebrities, gaining some momentum. The right-orthodox block now has 61 MKs, just enough to give Netanyahu the edge in the coalition building game after the election. Labor continues to lose ground, while Meretz is getting a bit stronger.
Here are the numbers (The margin of error is 4 percent):

Likud 33 MKs (+21 from the present Knesset)
Kadima 28 (-1)
Labor 11 (-8)
Shas 10 (-2)
Arab Parties (*) 10 (-)
Israel Beitenu 7 (-4)
Meretz 7 (+2)
Ihud Leumi 6 (-3)
Yahadut Hatorah 5 (-1)
The Green Party 3 (+3)
Gil (senior citizens) 0 (-7)

Right-Orthodox block (Likud + Shas + Israel Beitenu + Ihud Leumi + Yahadut Hatorah): 61 MKs
Center-Left block: (Kadima + Labor + Arab Parties + Meretz + Green Party): 59 MKs

* Most pollsters put the 3 major Arab parties (Hadash, Balad and Raam) into one category

The Election is Over, Let the Election Begin

Posted: November 13th, 2008 | Author: | Filed under: elections | Tags: , , , , , , , | 1 Comment »

The municipal elections are over, and there were a few interesting results, including surprising losses for some of Israel’s longest serving mayors: Yaakov Turner in Beer Sheva, Meir Nitzan in Rishon Le’tzion, and Zvi Zilker in Ashdod.

In Jerusalem, secular businessman Nir Barkat got the upper hand in his battle against Orthodox MK Menachem Porush. This doesn’t mean that Jerusalem is getting more secular. Porush lost because he failed to win the support of some important orthodox groups, most notably the Hasidics of Gur.

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The Communists are Coming!

Posted: November 10th, 2008 | Author: | Filed under: elections | Tags: , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment »

Three things to watch in the municipal election this Tuesday:

1. Tel Aviv: Mayor Ron Huldai is running for a third term after 10 years in office, backed by both Kadima and Labor parties. On the previous election Huldai won in a landslide without really campaigning, but public opinion of him has changed in the last two years. Huldai has failed to address the problem of raising rent and further worsened the situation for himsels by declaring that this was a normal result of the free market. Tel Aviv during his time in office became so attractive, he claimed, that everyone wanted to live in it. Huldai, a former pilot for the Air Force, who became a national figure as the successful principal of one of the city’s most prestigious high schools, has also made some unpopular decisions, such as taking down the legendary Osishkin basketball arena, home of Hapoel Tel Aviv, the second most popular team in the city.
His surprising challenger is MK Dov Khenin of Hadash, the radical left wing party. Khenin has built an Obama-like coalition of representatives from the poor neighborhoods in the south of the city, and the young students, journalists and bohemian crowd from the city center. Khenin is the grandson of an important Chabad rabbi, and was the former chairman of the “Environment and Life” organization, which amalgamates most of the environmental organizations in Israel.
The polls gave Huldai a 20 plus points advantage just a month ago, but the race has tightened since and the margin is considered to be in the high single digit area. Still, even the slight chance that a communist like Khenin will lead Israel’s cultural and financial capital is surprising, to say the least, considering the current political atmosphere.
My prediction: Huldai, by a margin of 15 points or more.

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Today’s Polls 10/31

Posted: October 31st, 2008 | Author: | Filed under: Polls | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments »

It’s the first weekend since the general election for the Knesset was announced, and we have three new polls: in “Haaretz”, the “Jerusalem Post” and the new metro paper “Israel Hayom”. All three polls reflect higher support for the right wing block than the “Maariv” poll from the midlle of the week. On Israel Hayom both blocks have exactly 60 MKs. Haaretz gives a 61-59 advantage to the right over the center-left block. The Jerusalem Post gives the right a 64-56 advantage, with Kadima and Likud tied at 27 and 14 going to Labor. For some reason, the Post didn’t publish the results for the other parties.

The center-left block will be lead by Tzipi Livni, except for the unlikely event of the Labor party getting the same number of MKs (or more) as Kadima, in which case Ehud Barak will lead this block. Benjamin Netanyahu, who leads the right wing block, has the upper hand in the coalition game to begin with, since the non-Zionist Arab MKs, which are part of the left-center block, are not considered an eligible part of the government to come. One should also note that we count the Green Party as part of the center-left block, though it might join the right wing after the election. More on the two blocks and on the process of coalition making in future posts.

Here are the Haaretz and Israel Hayom polls:


Kadima 31 30 29

Likud 31 31 12

Labor 10 13 19

Israel Beitenu 11 8 11

Shas 10 10 12

Arab Parties (*) 11 10 10

Ihud Leumi 3 6 9

Meretz 5 5 5

Yahadut Hatorah 6 5 6

Green Praty 2 2 -

Gil (senior citizens) – - 7

Right Block (Likud + Israel Beitenu + Shas + Ihud Leumi + Yahadut Hatorah) 61 60 50

Left-Center block (Kadima + Labor + Meretz + Arab Parties + Green/Gil) 59 60 70

Polls published in Israel reflect answers given by likely and decided voters. In many cases they won’t even note the likely-unlikely voters rate, nor the decided-undecided. That is the case with the Haartez poll. Israel Hayom’s poll has 30 percent (!) of people who are not decided or that refused to answer the poll. The Jerusalem Post poll found that 17 percent of the respondents are undecided.

* Most pollsters put the 3 major Arab parties (Hadash, Balad and Raam) into one category (“Arab Parties”). Haaretz’s poll, however, gives Hadash 6 MKs, Balad 3 and Raam 2.


Today’s Poll, 27.10

Posted: October 27th, 2008 | Author: | Filed under: Polls | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment »

The paper I work for, Maariv, published the first poll for the upcoming election. Here are the results:

Kadima: 31 Members of Knesset

Likud: 29 MKs

Israel Beitenu (Avigdor Liberman’s party), Labor, Arab Parties (Hadash + Balad + Raa’m): 11 MKs each

Shas (Sephardic orthodox): 8 MKs

Ihud Leumi (the right wing front): 7 MKs

Meretz (left wing liberal party): 5 MKs

Yahadut Hatorah (Ashkenazi orthodox): 4 MKs

Green Party (not present in the current Knesset): 3 MKs

The magic number in the Knesset is 60 (out of 120 seats). This poll gives the center-left (Kadima + Labor + Meretz + Arabs + Green) a block of 61 MKs, meaning Tzipi Livni will have the upper hand in the battle to form the next government.

However, there are a few things to consider:

First, the left and center usually underperform in the election (or, more accurately, over perform in the polls), and given the current political atmosphere, it is hard to see Livni get over the 30 mark, which is still better than Ehud Olmert did.

Second, Shas hasn’t gotten bellow 10 since the 1992 election, and it’s not going to happen this time either.

Third, Liberman hasn’t reached his full potential, which should be around 14-15 MK. With his anti Arab rhetoric, he has the ability to take votes not only from Likud, but also from Kadima and even Labor.

If I had to guess today, I would estimate the right-religious block crossing the 60, even by as much as 5-6 seats. But we still have a lot of time before the election. For now, it’s clear that Livni is going into the campaign much stronger than one could expect, given her failure to form a government.

By the way, the same pollster (Teleseker) just ran a survey in Israel on the upcoming US presidential election. The winner: John McCain, by a 12% margin. Exactly as in Texas.