Jewish Right To Israel

Jewish Right To Israel
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Thursday, January 19, 2006

Israeli Election Blues

Never mind the Palestinian elections on January 25th. What's happening with the Israeli elections scheduled for March 28?

Not much, apparently. Shiloh Musings notes a poll that indicates that more than half are undecided.

Israel Perspectives has conducted his own more informal poll that indicates it's more than not knowing for whom to vote. There is an attitude of : "I don't plan on voting in the upcoming elections. We have no voice in this country, our votes don't count for anything, so why bother?"

In both cases, the problem is the politicians.

According to WestBank Blog the issue cuts more broadly. To put it simply, "In a word, the Israeli electoral system stinks."

She quotes Evelyn Gordon's article Throw the Bums Out, which describes why they can't:
In Israel, people vote for a party rather than an individual, leaving the party to decide which individuals should fill any seats it wins. Thus if, say, the Likud opted to repay Tzahi Hanegbi for having given numerous jobs to friends and relatives of party hacks by awarding him a "safe" slot on the party´s next Knesset list, Likud voters would have no way to oust him, however much they despised his reported corrupt use of their tax shekels – unless they were willing to abandon their party en masse.
Is this really all that different from the 2004 US elections, where:

a) There wasn't 50% undecided. Instead, it was a very close election--the results were not known till the next day when the Ohio vote was settled.
b) There is an attitude of "I don't plan on voting in the upcoming elections. We have no voice in this country, our votes don't count for anything, so why bother?"
c) After the election everyone complains about the system of the electoral college.

With the uncertainties in the US about war and the future, there could be more similarities than differences. But what would have been if Sharon was in control...?

Crossposted at Israpundit

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