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Israel election 2022 results reflect the extreme right’s increasing power and Netanyahu’s return

JERUSALEM — While Israeli election results show former Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu with a slim parliamentary majority in the next government, they primarily represent a stunning victory for Israel’s far right, aggressively anti-democratic, fundamentally racist exercise that may soon regulate some of the country’s most significant positions of power.

Image Credit: Getty Images. Israel election 2022. USA TODAY
Image Credit: Getty Images. Israel election 2022. USA TODAY

Bezalel Smotrich, a self-described “proud homophobe” who has revealed intentions to undermine Israel’s legal system, and Itamar Ben Gvir, who has urged deportation of “disloyal” Israeli residents, both Jewish and Arab, are at the helm.

“We’re demanding change,” Ben Gvir said late Tuesday night after early results revealed that the slate his party shares with Smotrich, known as Religious Zionism, earned roughly 15 seats, making it Israel’s third largest party in the Knesset.

“We’re demanding an unequivocal separation between those who are loyal to Israel, with whom we have no problem, and those who are undermining our beloved nation,” he declared, addressing a packed audience of mostly young, pious men dancing to thumping dance music and alternately chanting, “Ooh-ah! Who is he? “The following Prime Minister!” as well as “death to terrorists!”

Image Credit: Getty Images. Israel election 2022. USA TODAY
Image Credit: Getty Images. Israel election 2022. USA TODAY

As the magnitude of his triumph became obvious Tuesday night, Netanyahu told his supporters, “our road has shown itself, and we’re on the verge of a huge victory”.

Israel election 2022 results

With 84 percent of ballots counted as of Wednesday afternoon local time, Netanyahu’s re-election looks to be a foregone conclusion. According to projections from Israel’s three leading television news outlets, a Netanyahu-led coalition would win between 62 and 65 seats in the 120-seat Knesset, exceeding the legislative majority necessary.

According to Israeli media, centrist interim Prime Minister Yair Lapid, head of the Yesh Atid party, whose coalition was initially anticipated to gain 54 or 55 seats, is now down to approximately 50 seats and preparing for the handover of power on Wednesday.

A Netanyahu-led administration would be the most religious and right-wing in Israeli history, bringing together the far-right Religious Zionism and the ultra-Orthodox parties Shas and United Torah Judaism.

Image Credit: Getty Images. Israel election 2022. USA TODAY
Image Credit: Getty Images. Israel election 2022. USA TODAY

According to detractors, the incoming administration will undoubtedly adopt legislative measures that would erode Israel’s beleaguered democracy. Last month, Religious Zionism presented “the Law and Justice Plan,” a judicial reform plan that might result in the cancellation of Netanyahu’s ongoing corruption prosecution.

For years, Netanyahu has erroneously claimed that the proceedings are a “witch hunt” staged by the Israeli Left. According to a tape obtained by Israeli news site Ynet on Sunday, Ben Gvir stated that if elected, he would push attempts to annul it.

However, such reforms might entrench state corruption, give politicians more influence over judge selections, and hamper efforts by Israel’s Supreme Court, one of the country’s few remaining bastions of liberal democracy, to overturn laws it considers to be in violation of human rights.

The Israel election 2022 represents a severe rightward trend in Israeli society, as well as a hardening of views on the Israeli-Palestinian problem as violence ebbs and flows with no end in sight. Since last spring, a surge in Palestinian assaults has fueled calls for a crackdown on Palestinians and a softer stance toward Israeli settlements in the West Bank.

Image Credit: Getty Images. Israel election 2022. USA TODAY
Image Credit: Getty Images. Israel election 2022. USA TODAY

Escalating Israeli incursions in the West Bank has set 2022 as the worst year for Palestinians in the West Bank since the United Nations began keeping data in 2005.

Ben Gvir has ties to the openly racist Kach party, which was formed by a radical American rabbi, Meir Kahane, and is now outlawed in Israel. He made his name defending Jewish settlers accused of violence and has campaigned for the expulsion of “disloyal” persons from Israel, including leftists and Palestinians. An image of Baruch Goldstein, who murdered 29 Muslim worshipers in a Hebron mosque massacre in 1994, used to hang in Ben Gvir’s living room, and Ben Gvir has been charged with inciting violence many times.

Supporters told The Washington Post on Tuesday that they voted for Ben Gvir because he supports official annexation of the occupied Palestinian lands and advocates murdering accused Palestinian militants rather than imprisoning them.

Image Credit: Getty Images. Israel election 2022. USA TODAY
Image Credit: Getty Images. Israel election 2022. USA TODAY

The Israel election 2022 turnout demonstrates that the Religious Zionist alliance performed well in the periphery and among voters in lower socioeconomic levels.

“We know that the ultra-Orthodox and Religious Zionist groups have considerably more youngsters per household,” Talshir of Hebrew University remarked.

Ben Gvir has asked to be named as public security minister, in charge of the police. Opponents, including some members of Israel’s security establishment, have cautioned that such a step would be detrimental to Israel, perhaps escalating the Israeli-Palestinian conflict significantly.

The National Unity Party, led by Defense Minister Benny Gantz, warned ahead of the Israel election 2022 that Ben Gvir would “light fire to the country from the inside” as head of public security.

According to Israel’s Central Election Committee, the overall turnout in the Israel election 2022, Israel’s fifth in less than four years, was 71.3 percent. Despite widespread tiredness, Israelis voted at a rate almost four percentage points higher than the previous year.

Exit polls on Tuesday night predicted a narrower win for Netanyahu, with 61 to 62 seats. The final tally, which may push Israel’s smaller but powerful parties over the Israel election 2022 threshold, is not likely until Thursday afternoon or Friday early.

Lapid’s Yesh Atid has received around 18% of the vote thus far, and exit polls predicted that the party will receive between 22 and 24 seats. His campaign relied on the backing of lesser political parties. According to the results, the left-wing Labor party just exceeded the four-seat barrier, while the other left-wing party, Meretz, and the Arab party, Balad, stayed below that number.

Turnout among Palestinian Israeli citizens, who vote at lower rates than Jewish Israelis, was keenly monitored as a possibly critical issue in the Israel election 2022. The Israel election 2022 was the first since an Arab party, the Islamist Ra’am, sat in Israel’s ruling coalition. Palestinian voters voiced discontent with Arab leaders and a Jewish-dominated political system that they claim marginalises their communities in the run-up to the Israel election 2022.

Image Credit: Getty Images. Israel election 2022. USA TODAY

Image Credit: Getty Images. Israel election 2022. USA TODAY

This statistic represents a 10% rise over the previous election. However, with just two of three parties now exceeding the barrier — Ra’am and the leftist Hadash-Ta’al combo — Arab parties may end up with one fewer seat than before.

This decline is the result of the Arab political scene’s disintegration. Another party, the nationalist Balad, broke away from the joint list and drew supporters who were hesitant to work with Jewish groups.

Balad earned nearly four times as many votes as it did in the last election, according to Talshir, indicating the party’s rising popularity among younger Arab voters. However, such support has not yet been converted into enough votes to overcome the barrier.

However, the higher-than-expected attendance in Palestinian Israeli towns prompted Netanyahu to make unfounded accusations of fraud. His party claimed that incidences of rioting and vote irregularities occurred at polling sites in primarily Arab districts immediately after exit polls were issued.

Overnight, a spokeswoman for the Central Election Committee denied any violations to Israeli media.

“We extensively reviewed them with our inspectors and the police force and concluded that all of them had no foundation in reality,” Dean Livne Entzvaig, the Central Election Committee’s main legal counsel, told The Post later Wednesday.

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Benjamin Netanyahu net worth: Benjamin Netanyahu is a wealthy Israeli politician with a net worth of $13 million. On March 31, 2009, Benjamin Netanyahu became Israel’s ninth Prime Minister. He was in office until June 2021.

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Benjamin Netanyahu nickname is Bibi.

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