Never has there been an election more devoid of policy and ideology.
With a month to go until the Knesset election on April 9, the campaign has boiled down to a referendum on Benjamin Netanyahu’s suitability as prime minister.
There are simply no other issues at stake in this election.
In recent days, the two main opposition parties, Blue & White and Labour, have published manifestos containing plenty of interesting details on social and economic issues and on the future of the state and religion in Israel, but media attention has been next to nil.
To be fair to the press, the parties themselves have made almost no effort to draw any attention to them.
Instead, politicians define themselves by to one yardstick: where they stand on Mr Netanyahu remaining in office.
Those in the coalition have committed themselves to supporting him, despite the indictments on bribery and fraud that the attorney general announced last week that he intends to serve.
Even the leaders of United Torah Judaism, the Strictly Orthodox party, have made it clear they will continue with the prime minister after the election come what may, reversing their usual approach of focusing on voter concerns and treating the premiership as a matter for after the results come in.
Israel has never had a referendum and no provisions for one exist in its laws but this election is about a single issue and the country seems split right down the middle about it.
For weeks, every poll has been measured in terms of votes for parties supporting Mr Netanyahu and those who will not sit in his government. The pro-Bibi bloc of right-wing and religious parties had the upper-hand in nearly every poll conducted over the past four years. The margin was not large —rarely more than half a dozen seats — but at least it was stable. That all ended two weeks ago.
With the last-minute merger of Israel Resilience and Yesh Atid into the centrist Blue & White list, the slow trend of soft-right voters leaving the coalition gathered pace. The two blocs evened out in the polls.
The attorney general’s announcement last Thursday has helped sustain that trend. Of the five polls that have appeared in the media since, four predict the coalition getting only 59 seats in the next Knesset. That would mean Mr Netanyahu losing this election.
But even if this remains the picture in the polls until April 9, it will likely not be enough for Mr Gantz to become prime minister. The components of the Likud bloc, especially the religious parties, have a tendency of exceeding their polling.
These parties have a faithful, concentrated base, and a well-oiled party machinery necessary to maximise their support by bringing out even the most hesitant, elderly and infirm voters.
Blue & White is a new party, with no similar apparatus, that relies on the notoriously fickle centrist voters. A lead of just a couple of points in the polls can be easily overturned by superior organisation on election day itself. Mr Netanyahu and his allies have done that before.
The centre-left opposition’s hope is for the trend to continue over the next month. Without a four or five point polling margin in their favour, the real results are likely to be against them.