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Elections expose the Pandora’s box of Israel’s religious right

The ideological differences and open hostility among the national religious and ultra-Orthodox parties exposed by the April elections could backfire on Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's decision to call for new elections, in September.
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In many election campaigns, the parties issue platforms, and candidates give speeches and make promises that everybody knows they won’t be able to keep. Politicians often take advantage of voters’ short attention span to pass economic measures at the start of a term on the assumption they'll be soon forgotten. If election campaigns are like masquerade balls, the morning after the election is when the masks come off. It is then that governments have to make choices to realize policies. The full consequences of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s decision to call elections within five months of those held in April are still to be determined, but it is clear that it has caused some politicians to be caught with their masks off, exposed in their embarrassment.

Netanyahu himself has been exposed more than anyone, as he now has to deal with having promised not to work to prevent his own trial but having been found to be doing just that from the moment he thought he would be able to form the next government. In fact, his Likud party has reportedly been trying to advance immunity legislation to help him while trying to assemble a government. On the left, significant opposition to Labor party leader Avi Gabbay has been exposed, and a public quarrel has broken out among Blue and White leaders over cooperating with the Arab parties. Netanyahu’s attempt to form a government with whoever was willing to join him, at any price and under any condition, has exposed the disgrace of the Likud. 

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