US/World News

Poll: 70% of Israelis want right-wing government

By Andrew Tobin/(JTA) – With talk of snap elections in the air, a new survey found that 70 percent of Israelis would want a right-wing or center-right government to come to power. The latest monthly Peace Index, which was published Tuesday by the Israel Democracy Institute and Tel Aviv University, showed that only 24 percent of the country would prefer a left-wing or center-left government to be elected. The survey included 500 Jewish and 100 Arab adults and had a 4.1 percent margin of error.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s staunchly right-wing government has looked shaky in recent weeks. A coalition crisis over public broadcasting was narrowly averted last week, and Netanyahu remains under investigation for corruption. But even many Israelis who would like to see a left-leaning government take over do not expect to see it happen, the survey found. Fully 81 percent of Jews said they think a right-wing or center-right government would come out of elections in the near future, compared to just eight percent who predicted a left wing or center-left government. Among Arab Israelis, 58 percent said they would want a left-wing government, but only 10 percent predicted it would happen.

A series of polls in recent months have shown Yair Lapid, the head of the centrist Yesh Atid party, challenging Netanyahu for the premiership in snap elections. Known to read the public mood, Lapid last week said he would try to form a national unity government if given the opportunity.

CAP: Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, left, and Education Minister Naftali Bennett attending the annual Bible Quiz in Jerusalem, May 12, 2016. (Shlomi Cohen/Flash90)

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