Senior Likud officials admit Netanyahu can’t form alternate government


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Senior Likud officials admit Netanyahu can’t form alternate government
Party sources say it can’t get enough voters to attain 61-seat majority, only hope is for new right-wing party to draw those unhappy with Bennett and Sa’ar
By Shalom Yerushalmi and Raoul Wootliff
8 November 2021

Following last week’s passage of the 2021-2022 national budget, senior Likud party officials have admitted that former prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s chances of bringing down the government and forming an alternate coalition have crumbled.

According to sources from Netanyahu’s party quoted by Zman Yisrael, the Times of Israel’s Hebrew sister site, on Monday, he has zero chance of toppling the government via a vote of no-confidence, which would require him to present an alternate government backed by at least 61 Knesset members. To do so, he would have to gain the backing of and join forces with the predominantly Arab Joint List party, and/or persuade a large group of coalition lawmakers to jump ship.

At the same time, while Likud has been polling as high as 36 seats (in polls taken before the budget was passed), well ahead of any other party, surveys still show Netanyahu failing to gain the backing of a Knesset majority if new elections were held.

The Knesset passed Israel’s 2022 budget early Friday morning, clearing the complex legislation’s last hurdle and capping a major success for Prime Minister Naftali Bennett’s unlikely ruling alliance of eight ideologically disparate parties. The 2021 budget was approved early Thursday.