The Knesset voted tonight to dissolve and head for elections, after only 671 days – less than half of its full term.
Out of a 120 MKs, 93 voted in favor of dissolving the Knesset in second and third readings. No one vote against the motion, and no one abstained.
Ahead of the vote, former finance minister Yair Lapid took to the podium, keeping his comments short: “The prime minister made two mistakes: He took Israel to elections that won’t serve the public, and the second mistake: He will lose.”
Taking to the podium after him, Meretz leader Zehava Gal-On said she was happy to be voting to dissolve the Knesset, adding: “Good riddance and goodbye.”
Knesset Speaker Yuli Edelstein said that while early elections were undesirable and, moreover, “wrong and redundant,” in the circumstances created, elections were “the lesser of evils.”
“A reality in which legitimate disagreements turn into unfathomable disputes; when differences of opinion turn into personal hatred and lead to score-settling that blocks every initiative and every possibility for cooperation within the coalition – the government turns into an empty vessel, an ineffective body in which each side is occupied with the other’s weaknesses,” Edelstein went on to say.
Likud faction chairman Yarvin Levin described the third Netanyahu government as “a very difficult coalition, very problematic.
“There was no willingness to understand the other’s needs, but even the opposition can’t look back at this term with pride. It didn’t win any vote. Both the unity in the opposition and the desire to challenge were not enough.”
A March 17 date has been set for the early elections. Read more at Ynet.