Both Channel 12 and Channel 13 exit polls foresee yet another stalemate, and granted Blue and White the highest amount of seats. | WHAT REALLY HAPPENED

Both Channel 12 and Channel 13 exit polls foresee yet another stalemate, and granted Blue and White the highest amount of seats.

Both Channel 12 and Channel 13 exit polls foresee yet another stalemate, and granted Blue and White the highest amount of seats.

Netanyahu, Gantz and other candidates spent the day pleading with voters to leave their homes and the beaches and malls to cast ballots. All the party heads, except for Yisrael Beytenu leader Avigdor Liberman, warned constantly that their voters’ turnout was too low and that the results would be a crisis tor their party.

"If this will continue we will lose these elections," Blue and White’s co-candidate for prime minister Yair Lapid said. "We need to vote or we are heading to disaster."

Lapid, Gantz and Yamina leader Ayelet Shaked went to the beach to ask sunbathers to vote. Gantz went to the Grand Canyon Mall in Haifa. Netanyahu went to the Jerusalem central bus station and the Mahane Yehuda market.

“The turnout in Tel Aviv is sky high and in Jerusalem it has hit the floor,” he told vendors at the market.

Netanyahu even gave interviews to radio stations that are prohibited by law from interviewing politicians on Election Day. When he cast his ballot, Netanyahu invoked the name of US President Donald Trump.

"President Trump said yesterday that these are close elections, and I can reaffirm to you this morning that these are very close [elections]," said Netanyahu.

The prime minister warned his voters at an “emergency meeting” with Likud politicians at his official residence in Jerusalem that the Joint Arab List would win 15 seats. Netanyahu based his prediction on data presented in English at the meeting by his American pollster, John McLaughlin.

Knesset Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee chairman Avi Dichter, who is a fluent Arabic speaker, reported to Netanyahu at the meeting that the Palestinian Authority is actively encouraging Israeli Arabs to vote for the Joint List in official PA media.

A spokeswoman for the Joint List said that, "Netanyahu and the Hebrew press are purposely inflating reports on Arab turnout to present a false impression that will keep Arab voters at home."

Joint List head Ayman Odeh said that when he voted in Haifa, he "felt energy" from his sector.

"We can bring about a historic achievement," he said.

Likud ministers Miri Regev and Amir Ohana reacted immediately by saying that despite not achieving his goal of 61 seats for his bloc, according to the exit polls, he would not be deposed as leader of Likud.

The Likud’s event in Expo Tel Aviv had countless members of the media from Israel and around the world commenting on the results – but almost none of the party’s politicians or activists were present to watch the exit polls come in, and the hall was mostly empty.

Both large parties planned relatively subdued events, as Netanyahu and Gantz sought to avoid the gaffe after April’s election, in which Gantz declared victory, but the right-wing bloc was bigger and Netanyahu was tasked with forming the coalition. This time around, it seemed even more likely that the exit polls would not give a clear picture of the final result.

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