Kadima wins 17th Knesset; Labor second

Wednesday, March 29, 2006 | 
Kadima members celebrated their bittersweet victory in the 17th Knesset on Wednesday earning 28 Knesset (parliament) seats. While Kadima was victorious, the results were less than encouraging though as early polls had them winning between 33 to 40 seats. The Labor party followed with 20 seats while the ultra-Orthodox Sephardic party Shas won 13 seats. The heavily Russian party Yisrael Beitenu (Israel Our Home) Party created the biggest upset, winning 12 seats and superseding the historically strong Likud, led by Benjamin Netanyahu. Likud gained only 11 seats. The biggest surprise was the Pensioner’s Party, a sector party representing the elderly, which won 7 seats and now is forced to create a platform. Nearly 5,000,000 Israelis were eligible to vote, but only 63.9 percent voted, marking the lowest percentage voter turnout in history.

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