With the support of both Avigdor Liberman’s Yisrael Beitenu Party and the Joint Arab List, Netanyahu’s main rival, Benny Gantz was given the first opportunity to form a government.
The Joint Arab list is headed by Ayman Odeh and Ahmed Tibi who has praised Jihadist “martyrs” including suicide bombers.
Additionally, the Joint List made a list of demands for entering negotiations with Gantz including a ban on Jews on the Temple Mount. The rest of their demands include:
Building new neighborhoods in Jerusalem – for Arabs.
No more Jewish construction in Judea-Samaria, and giving in to all PA demands.
An end to the drafting of Druze fighters into the IDF.
Veto power over all IDF operations.
Ending the Jewish Law of Return and Immigration Benefits.
Enacting an Arab Law of Return and encourage millions of Arabs to immigrate to Israel.
Providing 100% autonomy to Arab schools, and all other Arab sectors. Provide generous subsidies for free housing.
And although the former IDF Chief gets first dibs at forming a governing coalition, his chances of actually succeeding are slim. That’s because in order to do that, he would likely need the Joint Arab List to agree to join his government which is highly unlikely to happen.
If Gantz fails to form a coalition, Prime Minister Netanyahu will have a shot at it. But unless the Prime Minister can recruit at least three defectors, his chances of forming a government don’t seem to be much better.
To be tasked with forming a government, Gantz would need his own Blue and White Party, which won 33 seats in the March 2 election, Yisrael Beiteinu’s seven seats and Labor-Meretz’s six seats (without Gesher leader Orly Levy-Abekasis, who has said she will refuse to back a Gantz government supported by the Arab parties), together with with the support of the Joint List’s 15 seats from outside of the coalition.
If all those parties recommend him to form the next government, even without joining it, Gantz would have the backing of 61 MKs compared to 58 for Netanyahu from Likud (36), the ultra-Orthodox Shas (nine) and United Torah Judaism (seven) parties, and the right-wing Yamina (six).
Amidst the corona-virus crisis, Netanyahu tried to convince Gantz to join an emergency unity government. However his request fell on deaf ears.