Jerusalem (Jan. 26)
– The Knesset’s Legal Committee began consideration today of a government-initiated bill calling for elections to be held on July 7 but most observers expect an earlier date to emerge as a result of bargaining between coalition and opposition members. The bill passed its first reading in the Knesset last week.
According to well placed sources, the most likely date is June 30 or, alternatively, June 23, one week earlier. Majority opinion in the committee was said to favor an earlier date than that proposed in the bill. Opposition MKs are still talking of April or May elections but are expected to agree eventually to a date late in June. The National Religious Party, which holds the balance of votes in the committee, proposed the June date.