Tuesday, March 28, 2006

This is a really shitty distribution of seats for Kadima.

Kadima - 28
Labor - 20
Pensioners - 7
Meretz - 4

UTJ - 6
Arabs - 10

Shas - 13
Likud - 11
Israel Beitenu - 12
National Union - 9

So, in order to have a majority Kadima either needs a 4 party coalition - 61 seats (Kadima, Labor, Pensioners, UTJ)
Or bring in Shas - 61 seats (Kadima, Labor, Shas)

Note Shas leader Rav Ovadia Yosef decreed against unilateral withdrawals, so this would probably kill Olmert's plans.

Kadima only has 8 seats more than Labor meaning that any coalition will be almost one of equals, which is something that doesn't usually lead to stability in Israeli politics.

Kadima itself is very weak with numerous ideological groupings coming together for the sole purpose of winning the elections. It will be hard to keep all of them satisfied when so much negotiations with small parties will be required in order to form a government. In the future when the topic of conversation will be further withdrawals in the West Bank it will be even harder to keep all of Kadima supporting the party.

The only bright spot is that Shas, UTJ and the Pensioners are desperate to be a part of the next government. Lieberman also promised to be in the next government, and Netanyahu will probably get bored being the leader of the 5th largest party and will either leave the country or try to join the government. If Netanyahu stops being the leader of the Likud, there is little stopping that party from joining any coalition and effectively folding into Kadima.

I don't believe this government can stay in power for very long and wouldn't be surprised to see new elections within 2 years.


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