Coalition crisis: What are the possible options facing the Israeli government?

A debate between the Israeli Prime Minister and the Minister of Finance threaten to break up the current governing coalition which will likely result either in a compromise or in a premature election. However, other possibilities are on the table, all of which will result in some type of change in government.
Will the 34th Knesset dissolve? Photo Credit: Jonathan Sindel, Flash90/Channel 2 News

The heated debate within the Israeli government regarding the Israel Broadcasting Corporation is likely to spark an election but other possible options may change the face of the government and Knesset. However, political analysts expect that the quarrel between Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Minister of Finance Moshe Kahlon will end with a compromise.

Assuming that Netanyahu will not find another party from the Opposition to join the coalition instead of Kahlon’s party Kulanu, then its members are "stuck" with one another until one party decides otherwise. The coalition did raise the possibility that its members may try to pass the reins onto another MK or minister. However, this strategy is difficult and therefore it is unlikely to be agreed upon.

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The main option hinted by Netanyahu and Coalition Chairman David Bitan is to dissolve the current Knesset and to hold elections. In this scenario, the Knesset must vote three times in favor of a "Premature Dissolution of the Knesset.”

Crisis may lead to premature elections Photo Credit: Uri Lenz, Flash90/Channel 2 News

Another scenario is a “vote of no confidence,” which would immediately result in a new government. The Opposition dreams of this scenario, though the alternative government would have to rely on Yesh Atid in case Likud opposes it. This is unlikely as Yesh Atid’s chairman Yair Lapid has previously said he would not support an alternate government but would vote to hold an election.

Three years ago, the law regarding “votes of no confidence” was reformed wherein Knesset members are required to submit with their vote of no confidence an agreed upon candidate for prime minister as well as the complete composition of the new government proposed.

This option, which is called Constructive No Confidence, requires the support of at least 61 MKs majority vote. Opposition Leader Isaac (Bougie) Herzog has already called on the Minister of Finance to support this option.



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