Israel election 2022: Voter turnout hits 23-year high

High-level of voter turnout as Israelis head to the polls for the country’s fifth election in three-and-a-half years. Arab voter turnout levels reportedly low.

By World Israel News Staff

Israelis flocked to the polls Tuesday for the country’s fifth general election since April 2019, voting to determine the makeup of the 25th Knesset.

Turnout levels were high throughout the morning and early afternoon, surpassing those in every election over the past two decades.

Most of Israel’s 12,495 polling stations opened at 7:00 a.m. Tuesday, with some locations opening only at 8:00 a.m.

By 10:00 in the morning, 15.9% of Israel’s 6,788,804 eligible voters had cast their ballots, with 1,076,076 votes reported, the highest voter turnout rate since 1981.

The number of votes cast by noon rose to 1,925,393, with turnout rising to 28.4%. That is the highest level recorded since the 1999 election.

According to the latest data available from Israel’s Central Election Committee, as of 2:00 p.m. Israel time, turnout reached 38.9%, with 2,638,581 ballots cast, again surpassing any turnout rate since 1999.

The predominantly Arab Hadash-Ta’al list reported extremely low turnout in the Arab sector, estimating that as of 12:00 p.m., just 12% of eligible Arab voters had cast their ballots, less than half of the 28.4% turnout rate reported at that time in the general population.

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The Hebrew University’s aChord Center estimated Tuesday afternoon that as of 2:00 p.m., the Arab turnout level remains significantly below the overall turnout level, with just 17% of eligible Arab voters having cast their ballots, compared to 38.9% of the country as a whole.

The low turnout rates have led the Hadash-Ta’al list to turn to Jewish voters to ensure the party crosses the 3.25% electoral threshold.

“Jewish partners,” Hadash MK Aida Touma Sliman tweeted Tuesday. “Based on the current voter turnout levels, Hadash-Ta’al is in serious danger of not crossing the threshold.”

“For the first time in 74 years, there is a real danger that the clearest voice against the Occupation and for Arab-Jewish partnership will disappear from the Knesset.”

“I beg you, don’t let the fascists win! Go out and vote for peace, equality, and social justice.”