Netanyahu misses deadline to build a new government. Here's what comes next
May 4, 2021. Summarized by summa-bot.
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Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, leader of the Likud party, addresses supporters at the party campaign headquarters in Jerusalem early on March 24, 2021, after the end of voting in the fourth national election in two years. (Photo by EMMANUEL DUNAND / AFP) (Photo by EMMANUEL DUNAND/AFP via Getty Images)
Benjamin Netanyahu's hold on the Premiership of Israel looks a little less secure after a deadline to build a new government passed at midnight (5pET).
Seconds before the deadline passed, a statement from the Prime Minister's Likud party announced he had returned the mandate to form a new government back to President Reuven Rivlin.
But even if Lapid is given the mandate, the key man in coalition negotiations looks set to be Naftali Bennett, a former Defense Minister and leader of the right-wing Yamina party.
Another individual with knowledge of the negotiations told CNN that Bennett needed to allow Netanyahu's mandate to expire without success in order to show that a right-wing government was not possible.
Israel's Prime Minister had also made a last-minute appeal to Bennett's values as the mandate's deadline drew close, posting a clip from the election campaign of the Yamina leader declaring he would not back a government with Yair Lapid, and declaring, "I am a right winger and it [would] contradict my values.