About that Early Election in Israel…

Haaretz reports:  In surprise move, Netanyahu, Mofaz agree to form unity government, cancel early elections

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and opposition chairman MK Shaul Mofaz (Kadima) reached an agreement early Tuesday morning to form a national unity government and cancel early elections, which had been expected to take place on September 4.

Under the agreement, Kadima will join Netanyahu’s government and support its policies in exchange for a commitment that the government will support its proposal for an alternative to the Tal Law, which allows full-time yeshiva students to defer national service.


The dramatic announcement, which has yet to receive official confirmation, came as the Knesset was conducting early-morning discussions ahead of an expected vote to disperse in advance of early elections. Earlier in the evening, 119 MKs voted to approve in its first reading a bill to disperse the body, with only one lawmaker opposed.

And from the Jerusalem PostPM, Mofaz to form unity gov’t with Likud, Kadima

The Likud and Kadima factions began emergency meetings after 2:00 a.m. to discuss developments, with Likud and Kadima eventually approving the deal.

"We got important things," a Mofaz associate said. "If we wanted portfolios, we would have gotten them."

The deal passed unanimously in the Kadima faction.


Now, according to the agreement, Kadima has agreed not to topple the government until the official end of its term on October 22 2013. Mofaz will also become vice premier, and will fill in for the prime minister when he is abroad.

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Steven L. Taylor
About Steven L. Taylor
Steven L. Taylor is a Professor of Political Science and a College of Arts and Sciences Dean. His main areas of expertise include parties, elections, and the institutional design of democracies. His most recent book is the co-authored A Different Democracy: American Government in a 31-Country Perspective. He earned his Ph.D. from the University of Texas and his BA from the University of California, Irvine. He has been blogging since 2003 (originally at the now defunct Poliblog). Follow Steven on Twitter


  1. An Interested Party says:

    Oh great…the settlement policy can continue and anyone who dares to criticize Likud policies can continue to be labeled “anti-semetic”…meanwhile, the Palestinian demographic time bomb continues ticking…

  2. Tillman says:

    @An Interested Party: On the other hand, the ultra-Orthodox Jewish communities which believe the hardest about settlement policy now have to actually fight for them. Nothing changes a man’s opinion about war quite like being drafted.

  3. Ron Beasley says:

    I have no idea what this is all about but Josh Marshall does:

    Just on the face of it, it seems most logical in terms of Mofaz’s self-interest. He goes from being an ex-General primed to lead a once governing party into collapse at the next election to being Deputy Prime Minister and perhaps Defense Minister in the government. On its fact, for him, that’s not a bad bargain.

    It’s more about hanging on to political power than ideology.

  4. Glen Segell says:

    It’s called the Arab Spring also known as Banana Republics of theMiddle East. Some countries are just getting them others already have them. 94 out of 120 members of the Israeli Knesset are now the ruling government with no opposition. The Knesset has one house like the Congress and no Senate with the Prime Minister and cabinet all being elected members. The cabinet is made from the members of the 94 coalition. The President is symbolic figure where the incumbant has held all major positions in his 80+ years. Oh forgot to mention the Kadima Party was a breakaway from the Likud Party – create your own opposition and then merge back with them. Syria had elections today for its House of 250 members from a list of 7500 candidates. No opposition members in that Government either. Egypt goes to the polls on 23/24 May. Of the potential 28 original candidates the list is down to 12. Sorry, you can’t be President because the General in charge says you can’t. Jordan King Abdullah II just fired the third Prime Minister since the start of the Arab Spring in his country in january 2011. Not that it matters the Prime Minister is aappointed by the King. But watch this space the King has promised elections ….. Hey, that leaves Lebanon. Whats happening there ?