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Israel Votes: Netanyahu Wins Big in Rocket-Battered Sderot

TEL AVIV, ISRAEL - APRIL 10: Prime Minster of Israel, Benjamin Netanyahu and his wife, Sara greet supporters during his after vote speech on April 10, 2019 in Tel Aviv, Israel. Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Blue and White leader Benny Gantz each declared that they won Tuesday's election after …
Amir Levy/Getty
DEBORAH DANAN

TEL AVIV – After almost all the votes had been tallied Wednesday, a clear picture of Israel as a country divided along partisan lines emerged, with Likud and Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu representing one half of the map and Blue and White — with the dream of changing the “old guard” that its leader Benny Gantz symbolized for so many — standing in for the other. 

In Jerusalem, Likud won an easy victory over Blue and White, taking 24.75% of the vote over the latter’s 11.76%. However, it was the ultra-Orthodox United Torah Judaism party that won a sweeping triumph over the capital, bagging a whopping 24% of votes. Aryeh Deri’s Shas party slid into third place with 13.74%.

The southern town of Sderot, which has endured almost two decades of rockets fired from neighboring Gaza, gave Likud 43.52% of its vote. The right-wing secular Yisrael Beytenu took second place with 10.14%.

Netanyahu also beat out rival Gantz in the latter’s own hometown of Rosh Haayin, albeit by a slim margin of 34.85% to Gantz’s 33.91%.

Tel Aviv had the strongest support for Blue and White with 45.76%, while Likud only managed 19.15%. The dovish Meretz party came in third with 9.01%.

The southern population centers of Beersheba and Dimona also strongly favored the Likud, with 43.01% and 56.34% respectively. Blue and White took a distant second, coming in at 12.19% for Dimona and 17.49% for Beersheba.

In Rehovot, the race was tight with Blue and White taking 30.62% of the central city’s vote, with Likud coming in at 28.91%.

Haifa also saw Blue and White victorious, with 32.69%, while Likud trailed behind with 23.67%.

 

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