Netanyahu nominated to try forming Israel's next government

Netanyahu nominated to try forming Israel's next government
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Israeli President Reuven Rivlin nominated Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin NetanyahuBenjamin (Bibi) NetanyahuMORE to try forming Israel's next government, according to The New York Times.

Rivlin's decision Wednesday comes after a Sept. 17 election ended in a virtual tie between Netanyahu and Benny Gantz, with neither acquiring enough votes to win by simple majority.

After the election, Rivlin urged the two leaders to create a broad unity government that included both Netanyahu's conservative Likud party and Gantz's centrist Blue and White party. The two parties convened Tuesday but were unable to come to an agreement.


Netanyahu must secure 61 seats in Parliament in 28 days to succeed, a task he failed to do in May which led to the September election. The parties that have endorsed the Israeli leader hold 55 seats, according to the Times.

A key factor in whether Israel's longest-serving prime minister will be able to form a government in time is nationalist Avigdor Lieberman, who won eight seats in the special election. 

If Netanyahu fails once again to assemble a government, Rivlin could grant him a 14-day extension, the newspaper reported.

Alternatively, Rivlin could hand the task to Gantz, who would have 28 days of his own to assemble a government, but Gantz, who won 54 votes in the special election, faces a similar uphill battle to the coveted 61 votes.