Despite having cast their votes in April of this year, Israelis will be returning to the ballot box yet again in September after Prime Minister Netanyahu failed to create a coalition government that could hold the confidence of the Knesset. MLI Research Advisory Board member Elliot Tepper joined CTV News to make sense of this historic situation.
“What we have now is an unusually extreme version of normality,” says Tepper. With a list-based proportional representation system, small parties can hold a lot of power when it comes to composing governments. This naturally creates instability when larger parties (such as Netanyahu’s right-wing Likud party) attempt to form coalitions.
In this case, Tepper explains that Netanyahu’s proposed coalition failed on the issue of mandatory military service for ultra-Orthodox Jews. Rivaling factions within the coalition had mutually exclusive positions on this contentious issue, leading to the eventual collapse of the coalition and a call for new elections.
With the previous election proving to be divisive, Tepper says that Israelis are likely displeased by the prospect of another election cycle.
“Do Israelis have an appetite for politics? Yes they do. But are they disgusted by what they see in front of them? I suspect so.”