VAL | Valet i Israel, Mellanösterns enda demokrati, blev en riktig rysare mellan Benjamin Netanyahu och utmanaren Isaac Herzog.
Trots dåliga siffror lyckades premiärminister Benjamin Netanyahu vända en väntad valförlust till en vinst.
När Kulanu, ett av valets vågmästarpartier, nu rekommenderar att Netanyahu får möjlighet att bilda en ny koalitionsregering ser det ut som om Likud blir valets stora vinnare.
Ari Harow och Aron Shaviv, två av Likuds kampanjstrateger, har berättat hur man lyckades vända valet för det stora regeringspartiet. Lösningen kallar de för ”omvänd paketering”.
Gil Hoffman har intervjuat de två strategerna för Jerusalem Post.
“The most important decision was to drive the electorate to two large parties,” Harow says. “We decided that if we create a situation where people have to decide who they want as prime minister, people will prefer Netanyahu over [Zionist Union challenger Isaac] Herzog.”
Therefore, the first slogan of the Likud’s campaign was “It’s us or them,” referring to Herzog and his running mate Tzipi Livni, whom the Likud’s polls found extremely unpopular. Shaviv advised Netanyahu from the start of the campaign to push what he called “reverse packaging.”
The strategy was to persuade voters on the Right that rather than vote for other right-wing parties and get Netanyahu, they had to vote for Netanyahu and get the other parties in the coalition.
“You vote for a prime minister and get the parts,” Shaviv says. “You don’t buy a radio and get a car with it. You buy a car and get a radio. You vote Netanyahu and get [Bayit Yehudi leader Naftali] Bennett and [Kulanu head Moshe] Kahlon with it.”
But Shaviv had to wait for the right time to raise the stakes significantly and have Netanyahu drive that message home. The more Netanyahu fell in the polls, the more voters on the Right would feel compelled to vote for him.
A poll taken Sunday night found for the first time that fewer than half the public thought Netanyahu would form the next government. Only after that did tens of thousands of Israelis change their minds and get persuaded by Netanyahu’s countless interviews that their security required them to vote Likud.
“It’s one of those delicious ironies of the campaign,” Shaviv says. “The more people think you aren’t going to win, the more likely you will win. “Reverse packaging was devised day one and triggered at the right time. Only when it looked like Netanyahu would lose did it make sense to say you need to vote Likud to get Kahlon and Bennett.”
In the last 96 hours of the campaign, the strategists targeted the 7 to 8 percent of the electorate that was right-wing and undecided. Most of them were choosing between the Likud and Bayit Yehudi or between the Likud and Kulanu.
To that end, Netanyahu announced in radio interviews Sunday morning that if reelected, he would appoint Kahlon as his finance minister. That stopped the tide of Likud voters considering voting for Kulanu. Voters who put socioeconomic issues first on their agenda, now had those issues taken care of and could feel comfortable using their vote to guarantee Israel’s security.
Bild: Foto av Flash 90. Israels premiärminister Benjamin Netanyahu kampanjar i Jerusalem under valet 2015.