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Can Netanyahu lose to Bennett?

Bennett came within spitting distance of Netanyahu last week, when a Channel 12 poll showed that the difference between the two men stood at only three mandates.

By TOVAH LAZAROFF
October 11, 2020

“Bibi go home,” protesters chanted across Israel on Saturday night.

Their angry voices will be followed on Monday by the latest Knesset no-confidence motion filed by Yesh Atid head Yair Lapid.

Both the weekly protests and the Knesset votes are fueled by the public fury with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s perceived failure to handle to the COVID-19 pandemic amidst his trial. Together with a pending December budget vote, with its potential to bring down the government, the overall atmosphere appears to herald new elections.

Although the election debate has been dominated by the Yesh Atid and Blue and White parties, Netanyahu’s most likely rival, according to the latest polls, would be Yamina party head Naftali Bennett

He came within spitting distance of Netanyahu last week, when a Channel 12 poll showed that the difference between the two men stood at only three mandates.

Netanyahu’s Likud party had dropped from 36 in the March 2020 election, to 26. While Bennett’s had risen from five to an astounding 23. 

Bennett and Netanyahu have long battled for leadership of the Israeli right, but it had rarely seemed like a true contest.

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