Monday, January 21, 2019

More on Sweden and Israel

Sweden's election finally ended with a selection of a new government. The government was elected 115-153 with 77 abstentions and 4 absentees. Standings in Parliament will be as follows.

116 - Government (100 Social Democrats & 16 Green Party)
92 - Alliance (70 Moderates & 22 Christian Democrats)
62 - Neo Nationalists (62 Swedish Democrats)
51 - Confidence and Supply (31 Centre & 20 Liberals)
28 - Issue by Issue (28 Left)

Making for one of the weakest governments since WW2 in the country in terms of share of seats in Parliament.

Meanwhile in Israel, Ta'al continues to compete well with the Joint List. Reading between the lines it seems the major divide between the two is weather or not to work with other parties and join a potential government. Ta'al being opposed and Joint List appears willing and ready to consider joining a progressive government under the right circumstances.

Meanwhile, Livni appears considering to join forces with Yesh Atid; a move that would give that party a few extra seats, as her own Hatnuah party continues to regularly poll below the threshold. Benny Gantz also continues his efforts to get Gesher to join his Hosen Yisrael party.

Assuming for a moment these three things come to pass - Livni joining forces with Yesh Atid; Gesher joining Hosen Yisrael, and the Joint List sitting with a progressive government; the following projection can be made:

Pro-Bibi (50)
31 - Likud
7 - UTJ
4 - Shas
4 - Jewish Home
4 - Kulanu

Progressive (52)
16 - Hosen Yisrael
16 - Yesh Atid
9 - Labour
6 - Joint List
5 - Meretz

8 - New Right
6 - Ta'al
4 - Yisrael Beiteinu

It is possible for both Yisrael Beiteinu and the New Right to sit with Bibi; but both parties have a personal dislike of him, but at these numbers it would give such a coalition a bare majority.

Kulanu could always agree to switch sides as it is a more moderate party; additionally, UTJ and Shas might be willing to switch sides for the right price, but it seems unlikely they'd be willing to work with the Joint List, whose only Jewish MK is retiring. Even if Kulanu and Yisrael Beiteinu were brought over to the Progressives, it would not be enough for a majority; at least, not at these polling levels.

However. It should be noted that 4 seats puts a party at the threshold. And even a slight error in polling could see that 4 easily turn into 0. Many of the progressive parties riding the threshold such as Hatnuah and Gesher could well be folded into larger parties; while the right-wing smaller parties may not be; this gives a slight edge to the progressives.

Regardless, we'll need a lot more polls and for the various coalitions to form (deadline for party lists is 1 month from today) to see exactly how things will play out.

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