Nearly a month has passed since the Israeli elections took place. As envisaged forming a coalition would take time as each ideology must be considered. Yesh Atid especially are growing weary of the lengthy process, and appear to have given Netanyahu a direct ultimatum; either form a coalition with us and Bayit Yehudi or call for another election.
Yesh Atid in their manifesto intend on changing the electoral system to ensure the extensive process of forming a coalition is diminished under their watch. Instead of waiting to be in power to implement their agenda, they have decided to hurry Netanyahu along.
Yesh Atid along with Bayit Yehudi have issued a statement declaring that they will only join Netanyahu’s coalition if it is together.
What are you waiting for Netanyahu?
Yesh Atid in the election attained 19 mandates as well as Bayit Yehudi attaining 12. This comes to 31 equal to Likud-Beitanu. Together they have as much legitimacy as Netanyahu to be in Knesset in terms of votes.The Yesh Atid-Bayit Yehudi coalition has managed to balance Netanyahu’s power. This balance will in turn be translated to the influence held over Netanyahu.
It should not seem a difficult choice. By encompassing Yesh Atid and Bayit Yehudi into his coalition, Netanyahu will be over the threshold. With 62 seats, Netanyahu will have enough members to formalise a coalition. What more, the coalition will be small and thus Netanyahu will be able to focus on national interests rather than adhering to each parties’ individual interests.
However, Netanyahu has not yet chosen this approach. For this reason I doubt he ever will.
Netanyahu may want to guarantee his safety by adding another party into this possible coalition. However Yesh Atid have stated they will not enter a coalition with far right parties. Netanyahu, who is at the right of Likkud, is likely to want to bring a right wing ally into the fold.
A right wing party may deter Yesh Atid’s agenda of implementing all Jewish men to join the army no matter how religious one is.
Yesh Atid and Yair Lapid are fresh faces and symbolise change. Lapid is unlikely to be messed around and out-manoeuvred by Netanyahu. Yesh Atid were the biggest success in this election, gaining 19 seats from 0. What is clear is that the public are generating support for Lapid and his fight for more equality.
The political right must focus their attentions away from the Israel-Palestine conflict and onto social justice.
With the multi-polarity of agendas, no party is committed to compromise on ideology.
Due to this, Netanyahu is faced with a decision:
Form a coalition with Yesh Atid and Bayit Yehudi or issue further elections
This simple ultimatum does not render a prolonged thinking process.
By delaying his decision, it is clear Netanyahu is unhappy about welcoming Bayit Yehudi into his close-knit coalition.
On these grounds, the path to further elections are becoming increasingly more likely.