Watching the run-up to the Israeli election had me thinking recent American politics. Our State Department under the direction of our President had given money to a left wing group that gave money to a left wing group that dispatched Obama’s electioneering staff over to Israel to defeat Netanyahu. Their slogan “Anyone but Bibi” totally backfired. The panic that Netanyahu exhibited at the close of the campaign was something I felt over here and apparently over there.
Here is a Jerusalem Post article quote:
The “second Israel” did not like the the way the media seemed to be deposing of Netanyahu and bringing to power the Left under the leadership of Zionist Union leaders Isaac Herzog and Tzipi Livni, who were raised not far from each other in North Tel Aviv and are both the children of former Knesset members.
The Zionist Union inadvertently played into Netanyahu’s hands with a campaign of “anyone but Bibi.”
Zionist Union campaign strategist Reuven Adler, who joined the campaign late, said Wednesday morning that he was against that strategy from the start. By contrast Likud strategist Aron Shaviv got the Israeli Right correct. He sent Netanyahu to give countless interviews – it made him look like he was panicking (and he was), but the public got the message.
Many who considered staying home, or voting for one of the Likud’s satellite parties, hurried to the polling stations to cast ballots for Likud. People who have not voted in years – or at least not for Likud – felt the need to save Israel from the Left, Iran and from a hostile international community.
I waited until the polls closed in Israel to read the exit poll results. (10:00pm/3:00pm) It looked like Netanyahu pulled it out with a tie or a one seat lead to determine who would form a government. Today, after the actual votes were counted he had a 6 seat lead, beating all forecasts handily.