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Tags: David Rubin | Benjamin Netanyahu | Isaac Herzog

Ex-Israeli Mayor Rubin: Netanyahu Likely to Remain in Power

By    |   Tuesday, 17 March 2015 11:24 AM

Tuesday's elections in Israel have been "particularly intense" and brimming with speculation that the center-left Zionist Union candidate Isaac Herzog will best Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and his center-right Likud Party at the polls, according to David Rubin, the former mayor of Shiloh, Israel.

"Israel is a parliamentary democracy so when people go to the polls, they don't vote for a candidate, they're voting for a party," Rubin explained Tuesday on Newsmax TV's "America's Forum."

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Even if predictions prove accurate and Herzog's Zionist Union prevails, it is not a guarantee that he will be the next prime minister, said Rubin, author of "Sparks From Zion."

"What happens is after the election, all of the heads of the parties are invited to the president's house. The president is like a ceremonial post in Israel, but he determines by his discussions with the heads of the parties which of the parties is going to have its leader form the coalition," Rubin said.

"So I predict that we're going to see the Zionist Union, the main left-wing party, getting more votes than Prime Minister Netanyahu's Likud, but the Likud has a much better chance of actually forming the governing coalition."

Famed Harvard law professor Alan Dershowitz appeared on Newsmax TV with Rubin, noting that Israel is the lone "true Democracy" in the Middle East, something Dershowitz cautioned should not be lost on Americans.

"There were elections in Egypt, but who knows how real they were, in Turkey, certainly in Jordan you have a monarchy, Saudi Arabia there's not even a pretense," he said. "Of course, Syria and Iraq and Iran are not in any way democracies. So it's very nice to see a really thriving democracy in a part of the world that has never really had democracies and that's one of the reasons why all Americans should always be supportive of Israeli democracy. Israel is America's only reliable ally in the Middle East."

Both Herzog and Netanyahu are smart men capable of governing Israel, he added, they just "represent different perspectives."

"The public is being given a real choice here," said Dershowitz. "Now whether they will still have that choice, once the maneuvering begins and once we see people on the left coalescing with people on the right and people on the right getting together with the religious parties, it will remain to be seen. But right now we're seeing a thriving democracy at work and everybody ought to applaud that whichever way the election comes out."

He also predicted a better working relationship between the Obama White House and Netanyahu, should he hang on to his position. The men have had a famously frosty rapport, magnified by Netanyahu's address to the bipartisan U.S. Congress earlier this month without the president's prior approval.

"The White House clearly has an interest in seeing Netanyahu lose," Dershowitz said. "But if he wins the election, it looks like he is going to serve for the remaining two years of the Obama administration. They have no choice but to try and improve relations on both sides.

"The relationship between the two countries militarily, intelligence-wise, security-wise, is too close and too mutually dependent to have individual differences serve as a barrier. So I would hope that whoever wins the election will see a closer relationship between Israel and the United States over the next two years."

Rubin hazarded a guess that Netanyahu will continue as prime minister but not before Herzog tries and fails.
"I'm predicting that the Zionist Union will get more votes than the Likud and the president of Israel is going to give the head of the Zionist Union, Isaac Herzog, the task of forming the government," he said. "After 21 days, I don't think he's going to succeed and then Netanyahu of the Likud will be given that task."

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Tuesday's elections in Israel have been "particularly intense," David Rubin, the former mayor of Shiloh, Israel told Newsmax TV.
David Rubin, Benjamin Netanyahu, Isaac Herzog
Tuesday, 17 March 2015 11:24 AM
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