Naftali Bennett, the leader of the right-wing Yamina party in Israel, faces possible defections from his ranks as he tries to participate in a left-dominated coalition to replace incumbent Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in the next 48 hours.
On Sunday, the international media were abuzz with news that Bennett had reached an agreement with opposition leader Yair Lapid of the Yesh Atid party and several smaller parties to replace Netanyahu, though it was not clear they had enough votes.
Neither the pro-Netanyahu bloc nor the anti-Netanyahu bloc achieved a 61-seat majority in the last elections in March, the minimum threshold necessary to assemble a governing coalition in Israel, where no single party has ever held a majority.
Netanyahu’s Likud Party, as the largest party, received the first “mandate” to form a government, but could not within the 28-day deadline. Lapid received the second mandate, and his 28-day deadline