Mark Levin provides insight about what happened in Israel
Those who long for a parliamentary system in America, instead of our "winner take all" system, would do well to look at what's been happening in Israel. Benjamin Netanyahu, after twelve years as prime minister, is now out and, in his place, there's an unstable coalition made of people whose only common bond is that they, like the Israeli equivalent of America's Deep State, wanted Bibi out. Mark Levin does a good job explaining what happened.
In parliamentary systems, the people do not vote directly for the prime minister. Instead, parliament itself chooses its leader. If there's a clear majority and a single minority, it's simple. If there's a clear majority and several minorities, all of which are too small to combine against the majority, it's still simple.
It starts being a problem when there isn't a majority but is, instead, only a plurality. A plurality means that one party received more votes than each of the other parties received. However, the first party nevertheless failed to receive more than half of the total votes. Dictionary.com offers a good example:
For example, Gabriel won the plurality for school vice president with 40 percent of votes while Kiara came in with 35 percent and Carl with 25 percent. If Gabriel had received 54%, he would have received both the majority and plurality.
In that situation, all the various parties start making deals — building coalitions — in the hope that their coalition will have a majority of members in the parliament. When the coalitions fall apart (as they often do), elections begin all over again. It's an unstable system, especially in times of war — and Israel is always in a time of war.
Netanyahu, whom the Israeli left despises and attacks constantly, was eventually unable to cobble together a coalition. Mark Levin explains how his fall came about — and it bodes poorly for Israel's future:
Well, in this case, Netanyahu (his party, the Likud) indisputably received nearly six times the votes of would-be prime minister Naftali Bennett. What do I mean?
Bennett is the man set to replace Bibi as prime minister. How did this come to pass? Among other things, he ran to the right of Netanyahu in the election. Even still, he and his party received less than 5 percent of the popular vote. How does a politician who barely registers among the voters become a prime minister in a democracy? To my knowledge, it has never happened, certainly not in Israel. Indeed, how could it? Israel prides itself on being a democracy, despite its dysfunctional electoral system.
Israel's parliament — the Knesset — consists of 120 members. Bennett decided to run in his own party. His party garnered a grand total of six seats out of 120. In sum, it was crushed at the polls. The people overwhelmingly rejected it and him. But Bennett had another idea, no doubt hatched before the election against the possibility that he performed as disastrously as the polls had suggested he would. Since Israel's governments are built on like-minded coalitions of multiple parties, and if the conditions allowed, he'd join the Netanyahu opposition, but only if he could position himself to become the next prime minister.
He left the so-called right-wing parties and threw in with the left-wing parties — most of which are small and tiny parties (including the Arabs) — in order to defeat the prime minister, negotiate to become premier himself and sell out his voters and his country for a short stint as prime minister.
No wonder, then, that Netanyahu left office breathing fire and, Arnold Schwarzenegger–like, promised he'll be back — including coming back to challenge Biden:
Benjamin Netanyahu compared US President Joe Biden administration's planned return to the Iran deal to US neglect of European Jews during the Holocaust, in his final speech as prime minister on Sunday.
"The administration in Washington asked me not to discuss our disagreement on Iran publicly, but with all due respect, I can't do that," Netanyahu said.
He compared the US returning to the Iran deal to former US president Franklin Delano Roosevelt declining to bomb the train tracks to Auschwitz when he had the chance.
Netanyahu also told Israelis not to trust Bennett to protect them from Iran:
Bennett does not have "the international stature, the knowledge, the government or the public's trust to be taken seriously when fighting the Iranian threat," he said. "An Israeli prime minister has to be able to say no to the president of the US on matters that endanger our existence. I'll be happy if this doesn't come true, but from the moment the US returns to the Iran Deal, this government will not approve operations against Iran to stop their armament."
Iran is "celebrating" Israel's weak new government, Netanyahu warned, adding in English: "We'll be back soon."
I agree with Netanyahu. Having Bennett propped up by a coalition of leftists and Islamists means that Israel is like a rowboat without oars heading to a whirlpool. Israel's salvation will lie with its citizens being smart enough to give truth to Bibi's promise that "We'll be back soon."
Image: Benjamin Netanyahu. YouTube screen grab.
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