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Poll Shows Likud and Labor Are Running Neck to Neck

The ruling Likud and the opposition Labor Alignment are running neck to neck, according to the latest opinion poll published in the Jerusalem Post today. Each party would win 41 Knesset seats if the elections were held tomorrow, the poll found.

The figures, according to the Modi’in Ezrachi Applied Research Center, which conducted the poll for the Post, showed an acceleration of the swing towards Likud which has been evident since the beginning of the year. The poll, conducted among 1245 adults during the last days of April and first days of May, showed another important finding: The number of “don’t knows” is now declining. Only 24 percent refused to state a preference to the pollsters this time, compared with 31 percent a month ago. This indicated that a high proportion of “don’t knows” were swinging to Likud.

The figures for the other main parties were: National Religious Party, 9; Aguda bloc, 6; Telem, 4; Tehiya, 3; Civil Rights Movement, 2; Shinui 1; others, 13. The 41-41 Likud Labor tie compared to 35 for Likud and 46 for Labor one month ago, 33-45 in March, 22-52 in February, and 20-58 in January.

The pollsters found that Likud supporters lend to be lower-income and lower-educated than the Labor supporters. There is a preponderance of Oriental voters among the Likud ranks while many Ashkenazim tend towards Labor. The Pollsters also found a continuing trend towards hawkishness, with 75 percent of those questioned favoring continued settlement on the West Bank. The pollsters reported a feeling that Labor’s policy alternatives, both on the economy and on foreign affairs, were not clearly defined in the minds of many voters.

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