It’s Official: Naftali Bennett Confirmed as New Israeli Prime Minister, 60-59

Naftali Bennett confirmed (Emmanuel Dunand / AFP / Getty)
Emmanuel Dunand / AFP / Getty

Israel’s parliament, the Knesset, confirmed Naftali Bennett as the country’s new prime minister on Sunday evening, at the head of a narrow majority coalition of small parties that has replaced Benjamin Netanyahu for the first time in 12 years.

The vote was as close as it could possibly be, with the Knesset voting 60-59 to confirm the government by one vote.

Earlier, the Knesset heard speeches from Bennett and Netanyahu, as well as from smaller parties. Bennett thanked his rival for his service, and promised to work with U.S. President Joe Biden, though vowed to oppose the Iran nuclear deal.

Netanyahu retorted that Bennett could not be trusted to keep his word, and vowed to topple the new government from the opposition benches, assuming that his last-minute efforts to encourage coalition members to defect from Bennett failed.

Other speeches included an oration from Mansour Abbas, whose Islamist Ra’am party is the first Arab party to play a major role in an Israeli government. Abbas delivered his address in Arabic, which is one of Israel’s official languages.

Joel B. Pollak is Senior Editor-at-Large at Breitbart News and the host of Breitbart News Sunday on Sirius XM Patriot on Sunday evenings from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. ET (4 p.m. to 7 p.m. PT). He is the author of the new e-book, The Zionist Conspiracy (and how to join it). His recent book, RED NOVEMBER, tells the story of the 2020 Democratic presidential primary from a conservative perspective. He is a winner of the 2018 Robert Novak Journalism Alumni Fellowship. Follow him on Twitter at @joelpollak.

This story is developing.


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