Joint List chairman Ayman Odeh (Hadash) declared yesterday (Tuesday, March 3) that the alliance of Hadash, Balad, Ta’al and Ra’am had realized a “huge achievement” in Monday’s Israeli general elections for the Knesset after nearly-final results suggested it won 15 seats in the 120-seat parliament.
As the Communist Party of Israel reports, the election results showed that more than 530,000 voter, Arabs and Jews, cast their ballots for the Joint List.
“Brothers and sisters, you have created an historic day,” Odeh said. “From the first elections in 1949 until today, we [the Arab public in Israel] have not received this degree of support and this number of seats in the Knesset. Odeh maintained that the Joint alliance will “strengthen the left and the Jewish-Arab alternative.”
Ayman Odeh related how the Joint List received votes from many thousands of Jews and contended that the alliance needs to become “the principled alternative for the entire Israeli political map.”
“I call on left-wingers not to despair or soul-search, but rather to think about partnership and a principled alternative,” Odeh said said, adding that he’s talking about “real peace and democracy, authentic equality between Arabs and Jews, and social justice for all marginalized persons.”
Monday’s election marked another setback for the Zionist social democracy, particularly for the Labor party which governed the country for its first three decades. The Labor-Gesher-Meretz alliance was projected to get just six or seven seats, making it one of the smallest factions in parliament, with only three MPs for the Labor party and two for Meretz.
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's Likud party gained 29.5% and 36 seats, while the Blue and White alliance of Benny Gantz received 26.6% and 33 seats in the Knesset. Avigdor Lieberman's far-right, nationalist Yisrael Beiteinu got just 5.8%.