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Netanyahu’s bloc retains lead with over 60% of ballots counted

Likud leader Benjamin Netanyahu addresses supporters at the party's campaign headquarters in Jerusalem early on November 2, 2022, with his wife Sara at his side. (AP Photo/Tsafrir Abayov)
Likud leader Benjamin Netanyahu addresses supporters at the party's campaign headquarters in Jerusalem early on November 2, 2022, with his wife Sara at his side. (AP Photo/Tsafrir Abayov)

The vote count is progressing at the Central Elections Committee, with 62 percent of the total ballots cast now tallied.

The committee has so far counted 3,020,710 votes.

Benjamin Netanyahu’s right-religious bloc continues to lead, and based on the current count would pick up 69 seats, though this number will change as more ballots are processed.

Exit polls have predicted 62 seats for Netanyahu’s bloc, enough to secure a majority and form a coalition in the 120-seat Knesset.

The left-wing Meretz party is currently on the edge of the 3.25% vote minimum needed to win Knesset representation, with 3.17%, although some pollsters have predicted the party will pass and win around four-five seats in the final tally.

The Islamist Ra’am party, projected to win four seats in exit polls, is also under the electoral threshold at 2.47%, according to the current count.

The opposition Arab Balad party is also just under the threshold with 2.75% of total votes.

If Ra’am, Balad, or Meretz fail to win Knesset representation it will further boost Netanyahu’s prospects for forming a coalition.

The ongoing count is not representative of the overall vote since ballots come in from different areas of the country at different times, and the percentages allotted to each party will likely shift as the tally continues.

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