Netanyahu has announced he will not agree to a rotation arrangement with Livni, saying, “We will not [agree to] a rotation government, we intend to form the [largest possible coalition] government.”* To me, this says one of two things:
- Option 1 – he will try to head a coalition, with Kadima as a member. I do not think such a coalition would last very long, because such a government would not be able to get much done at all. The status quo would continue being the status quo (which is not necessarily a bad thing).
- The second, more likely, option is that he is trying garner public support, in order to be able to say “Look, I tried to reach out, but Livni wouldn’t play ball. But the people chose us (the Right-wing) – we have a majority, and I’m sorry Kadima is too obstinate to adhere to the will of the people.” Then he will go on to form a relatively narrow, 65-seat, coalition, backed by his, alleged, nonpartisan inclusiveness. (Think Barak and his famous claim to be “ראש הממשלה של כ-ו-ל-ם” – “the Prime Minister of e-v-e-r-y-o-n-e”).
If you want to try to test out all of the possible combinations (until the soldiers’ votes are counted, if that even makes a difference), then Ynet has “Make Your Own Coalition” game*. See if you can form a coalition. It even tells you if a coalition agreement is unlikely – i.e. Hadash along with Yisrael Beitenu. On the other hand, the program seems to believe that a Yisrael Beitenu/Kadima/others coalition is feasible. Who knows?
Also, on Ynet has a feature that lets you see the breakdown of how various sections of society voted (Kibbutzim, Urban, Arabs, Jews).*
In any case, the most ironic thing I’ve seen in the past few days is the verse, quoted on the Knesset’s official elections website*: “(הָבוּ לָכֶם אֲנָשִׁים חֲכָמִים וּנְבֹנִים וִידֻעִים לְשִׁבְטֵיכֶם וַאֲשִׂימֵם בְּרָאשֵׁיכֶם. (דברים א’, י”ג” – “Get you wise and understanding men, and full of knowledge, from your tribes, and I will make them heads over you.” (Deuteronomy 1:13). Right.
*Sorry, all sources on this page are in Hebrew.