Vote early and often

PM Sharon and new Labor Party leader Amir Peretz have agreed to hold early elections in late February or March 2006, on a non-Purim Tuesday to be named later. This means that we won’t have Israeli and American elections on the same day (November 7, 2006), as originally planned.
There will be much political excitement before the general election campaign even begins: Will Sharon stay in the Likud or form a new center-right party? If he stays, who will win the Likud primary between Sharon and Netanyahu?

6 thoughts on “Vote early and often

  1. Sorry to be the cynic, though it will be good to see this evil government given the boot, I really don’t believe that what will follow it will be any better.

  2. I am hopeful.. if Netanyahu and Likud win then it will be worse, but if Amir Peretz can bring this new incarnation of Labor back to power and he walks the walk, the way he’s been talking the talk then I think things could get better
    I think Peretz is loyal to the peace process. I think he is more sincere about this than other politicians. (Peretz has already indicated that if elected Prime Minister, he would ask the Palestinian leadership to enter into negotiations over a final-status settlement).” – Uri Avnery

  3. the initial polling is based on three situations:
    1) sharon and peres (not peretz) form a centrist party
    2) sharon stays in likkud and wins primary
    3) sharon stays in likkud and netanyahu wins primary
    in all situations Labor picks up many seats from Likkud.
    netanyahu will go down hard against peretz as people still blame benny for the economic problems.
    labor will pull seats from meretz and (suprisingly) shinui+shas. shinui because of the centrist chilonim and shas because of the poor sepahrdim to whom peretz appeals as a class-warrior mizrachi jew. in most scenarios it looks like labor should get up to 27/28 seats. with a centrist party that would put likkud out of the government and labor in, with either peretz or sharon PM. it seems to me that either situation would be better than sharon being PM with likkud in the government.
    does that seem correct to y’all?

  4. Here is my prediction:
    Labor picks up more seats, but Likud still wins.
    The toss up is if Sharon leaves to form a centrist party or not, and will Shimon Peres join him in the centrist camp.
    Either way it will be super duper ugly and tragically the same will emerge regardless.
    If Peretz truly wants to make a run for the money, he needs to adjust some of his economic views, restructure the Histadrut to make it more effective, become more market friendly, Reach out to Ashkenazi votes, and at the same time appeal to the Sephardic communities. He has a hard road ahead, but I’m glad there is a committed Peacenik running, even for the sheer fact that is a clear 2nd option to what is going on now.
    check out:

  5. Whether Sharon stays within Likud (where an increasing number of machers hate his guts and want him out), or forms yet another party (oy Gotteynu, last thing Israel needs) — his days as PM are numbered.
    Unless, that is, he were to heed Peretz’s recent call addressed to working-class voters: “Come join the new social pact. You are not abandoning Likud. Likud has abandoned you.”
    Think about it. If Sharon joined Labor, though he obviously couldn’t be PM in the next election, he just might position himself in the future as a viable PM candidate. Laborniks overwhelmingly approve of his decision to quit Gaza, unlike their Likud counterparts, and if Sharon were to join Mifleget Avodah, he would be able to position himself as a tough but flexible and realistic leader in the tradition of Rabin z”l. He’s proven himself to be very tough on terrorism and deserves credit for slowing down a once-horrific uprising to a trickle. At the same time, unlike the powers-that-be in Likud, he is a realist who now recognizes “Greater Israel” for the chimera that it is, and has shown himself willing to abandon territory that the vast majority of Israelis neither need nor want.

  6. Well, scratch my last comment. Latest news, from Israeli Army Radio, is that Sharon will be quitting Likud and forming his own party. I wish him luck (I sincerely do) …he’ll need it.

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