1984 Israeli Legislative Election
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1984 Israeli Legislative Election
Elections for the 11th Knesset
← 1981 23 July 1984 1988 →

Elections for the eleventh Knesset were held in Israel on 23 July 1984. Voter turnout was 78.8%.[1] The results saw the Alignment return to being the largest party in the Knesset, a status it had lost in 1977. However, the party could not form a government with any of the smaller parties, resulting in a national unity government with Likud, with both party leaders, Shimon Peres and Yitzhak Shamir, holding the post of Prime Minister for two years each.


The ongoing South Lebanon conflict

Bus 300 affair

Parliament factions

The table below lists the parliamentary factions represented in the 10th Knesset.

Name Ideology Symbol Leader 1981 result Seats at 1983
Votes (%) Seats
Likud National conservatism
National liberalism
Yitzhak Shamir 37.1%
Alignment Social democracy
Labor Zionism
Shimon Peres 36.6%
Mafdal Religious Zionism ? Yosef Burg 4.9%
Agudat Yisrael Religious conservatism ? Avraham Yosef Shapira 3.7%
Hadash Communism
? Meir Vilner 3.4%
Tehiya Ultranationalism
Revisionist Zionism
? Yuval Ne'eman
Geula Cohen
Tami Religious Zionism
Economic egalitarianism
Aharon Abuhatzira 2.3%
Telem Centrism Moshe Dayan 1.6%
Shinui Liberalism
Amnon Rubinstein 1.5%
Ratz Social democracy
Shulamit Aloni 1.4%

Election campaign


1984 Knesset.svg
Party Votes % Seats +/-
Alignment 1 2 724,074 34.9 44 -3
Likud 4 661,302 31.9 41 -7
Tehiya-Tzomet 5 83,037 4.0 5 +2
National Religious Party 6 73,530 3.5 4 -2
Hadash-Black Panthers 8 69,815 3.4 4 0
Shas 7 63,605 3.1 4 New
Shinui 1 3 54,747 2.7 3 +1
Ratz 1 3 49,698 2.4 3 +2
Yahad 2 46,302 2.2 3 New
Progressive List for Peace 38,012 1.8 2 New
Agudat Yisrael 36,079 1.7 2 -2
Morasha 6 33,287 1.6 2 New
Tami 4 31,103 1.5 1 -2
Kach 25,907 1.2 1 +1
Ometz 4 23,845 1.2 1 New
Aryeh Eliav 15,348 0.7 0 New
Handicapped Organisation 12,329 0.6 0 New
Movement for the Renewal of Social Zionism 5,876 0.3 0 New
Aliyah and Youth Movement 5,794 0.3 0 New
Shiluv 5,499 0.3 0 New
Independence 4,887 0.2 0 New
National Organisation for the Defence of the Tenant 3,195 0.2 0 New
Development and Peace 2,430 0.1 0 0
Has Mas 1,472 0.1 0 New
Movement for the Homeland 1,415 0.1 0 New
Amkha 733 0.1 0 0
Invalid/blank votes 18,081 - - -
Total 2,091,402 100 120 0
Source: Nohlen et al.

1 Five MKs broke away from the Alignment to establish Mapam and one to establish the Arab Democratic Party, whilst one MK defected to Ratz and one to Shinui.

2 Yahad merged into the Alignment.

3Mordechai Virshubski defected from Shinui to Ratz.

4 Ometz and Tami merged into Likud.

5 One MK broke away from Tehiya to establish Tzomet.

6Haim Drukman defected from Morasha to the National Religious Party.

7Shimon Ben-Shlomo broke away from Shas.

8Muhammed Wattad defected from Mapam to Hadash.

The Eleventh Knesset

Due to the stalemate produced by the elections, it was decided to form a national unity government, with the Alignment and Likud holding the leadership for two years each. The Alignment's Shimon Peres formed the twenty-first government on 13 September 1984, and as well as Likud, the coalition included the National Religious Party, Agudat Israel, Shas, Morasha, Shinui and Ometz. Aside from national unity governments created at a time of war (notably the government formed during the Six-Day War in the term of the sixth Knesset, which had 111 MKs), it was the largest ever government in Israeli political history, with 97 MKs.

In accordance with the rotation agreement, Peres resigned in 1986 and Likud's Yitzhak Shamir formed the twenty-second government on 20 October 1986. Shinui left the coalition on 26 May 1987.

The eleventh Knesset also contained two controversial parties, Kach and the Progressive List for Peace (PLFP). Kach was a far-right party that advocated the expulsion of most Israeli Arabs, and although it had run in previous elections, it had not passed the electoral threshold. Ultimately the party was banned after a law was passed barring parties that incited racism. The attempts made to stop Kach from competing in the next elections also affected the PLFP, as the addition of section 7a to the Basic Law dealing with the Knesset ("Prevention of Participation of Candidates List") included the banning of parties that denied Israel's existence as a Jewish state:

A candidates' list shall not participate in elections to the Knesset if its objects or actions, expressly or by implication, include one of the following... negation of the existence of the State of Israel as the state of the Jewish people.

On this basis, the Central Elections Committee initially banned the PLFP from running for the 1988 elections, arguing that its policies promoted the scrapping of Israel as a Jewish state. However, the decision was eventually overturned by the Supreme Court of Israel, and the party was able to compete in the elections, winning one seat. Nevertheless, the law was not overturned, the Supreme Court merely deciding it was impossible to determine if "the real, central and active purpose [of the PFLP] is to bring about the elimination of the State of Israel as the state of the Jewish people",[2] and attempts were made to ban the Israeli Arab parties Balad and Ta'al using the same law prior to the 2003 elections.


  1. ^ Dieter Nohlen, Florian Grotz & Christof Hartmann (2001) Elections in Asia: A data handbook, Volume I, p127 ISBN 0-19-924958-X
  2. ^ Entry barriers to the Knesset race[permanent dead link] Haaretz

External links

  This article uses material from the Wikipedia page available here. It is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share-Alike License 3.0.



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