by: Kate Norman
Monday, 14 November 2022 | President Isaac Herzog yesterday tasked Likud chairman Benjamin Netanyahu with forming the next government of Israel, following the victory of Netanyahu’s right-wing bloc in the elections earlier this month.
After five elections in less than four years had failed to break the political stalemate, leaving the Jewish state without a stable government, Netanyahu’s bloc of right-wing, religious parties won 64 seats, giving him a comfortable majority in the 120-seat Knesset (Parliament).
Netanyahu served as prime minister from 1996–1999 and then from 2009–2021, giving him the title of Israel’s longest-serving prime minister. Now, as he seems to return to the helm of the Jewish state to form the 25th Knesset, Netanyahu promised yesterday to form a “stable and successful government” to serve “all of Israel’s residents, without exception,” as quoted by the Times of Israel.
“I intend to be a prime minister for everyone—for those who voted for me, and for those who did not vote for me,” Netanyahu added at yesterday’s ceremony, where he received the mandate from Herzog at the President’s Residence in Jerusalem.
In Israeli elections, people vote for parties rather than candidates, and parties are given certain amounts of seats in the Knesset based on how many votes they won in the election. Each party then meets with the president of Israel to recommend a candidate to form a government comprising a majority coalition.
President Herzog said in a speech at his residence in Jerusalem yesterday that 64 members of the Knesset recommended Netanyahu for the job based on the election results and his strong chance of putting together a government.
Netanyahu will now have 28 days to finish the job, with an optional extension of 14 days if necessary—though he is expected to have little difficulty rallying the required majority.
This is Netanyahu’s eighth time receiving the mandate to form a government from the president, with a track record of succeeding five times and failing three times.
Given the cushy majority his bloc received from the voters, Netanyahu is expected to once again put together a majority coalition and return to his old seat at the head of the Knesset. The next 28 days will comprise divvying out ministerial and government positions.
After giving Netanyahu the mandate, President Herzog wished him well on his mission.
“Your success is the success of the entire people,” Herzog said.
Posted on November 14, 2022
Source: (Bridges for Peace, November 14, 2022)
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