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Livni Sinks in Pre-Election Poll as Netanyahu Keeps Lead

Jan. 16 (Bloomberg) -- Tzipi Livni, Israel’s former foreign minister, dropped in a poll before next week’s election as Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu maintained his lead, the news website Walla! reported today.

Livni’s Hatenuah party would get six seats in Israel’s 120-seat parliament, down from 11 in a previous poll and compared with 34 for Netanyahu’s Likud-Beitenu slate.

In second place, according to Walla, is the Labor Party with 18 seats, followed by Jewish Home with 15, Yesh Atid with 11 and Shas with 10. Livni’s former party, Kadima, would get three seats after winning 28 in the 2009 election.

The poll is in line with others conducted by Haaretz, the Times of Israel, Channel 2 television and Israel Radio that indicate Netanyahu will be able to build a coalition majority with smaller parties in parliament and win re-election to a third term as prime minister.

Walla’s poll, released six days before Israel’s Jan. 22 election, surveyed 500 adult Israelis and had a margin of error of two parliamentary seats.

To contact the reporter on this story: Jonathan Ferziger in Tel Aviv at jferziger@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Andrew J. Barden at barden@bloomberg.net

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