JERUSALEM, March 13 (UPI) -- With an election only days away, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, acknowledged Friday his position may be in jeopardy.
Polls indicate Netanyahu's right-leaning Likud party is falling behind the Zionist Union in the number of Israeli Parliament seats expected to be won in the March 17 election. A two-seat Zionist Union lead last week is now four seats.
Polling groups, by law, stop reporting within four days of an election. The newspaper Yedioth Aharonot said the Zionist Union could expect to win 26 seats to the Likud's 22 seats; a Jerusalem Post-Maariv survey showed the Zionist Union would have 25 seats to Likud's 21. With lesser parties winning the rest of the seats in the 120-member parliament, a coalition government would abandon Netanyahu for Zionist Union leader Yitzhak Herzog.
A crucial element of the race is support for the centrist Yesh Atid and Kulanu parties, and which coalition either would join.
Netanyahu, who seeks his third term as prime minister, acknowledged in an interview with the Jerusalem Post that it was "not at all" certain he would retain his position. He characterized the election as a "critical choice between two ways," suggesting the Zionist Union-led coalition would "make concessions all along the way" to Israel's perceived enemies. He acknowledged his administration had not done enough to rein in Israel's cost of living and housing prices.
He referred the U.S. Congress, where he spoke two weeks ago to warn against a proposed agreement that "gives Iran a direct path to create nuclear bombs...meant to destroy us" as the "last place that could halt this deal."
Referring to the opposition Zionist Union, Netanyahu said, "There is a deep gap between us. They want to surrender; we want to stand tall. They bow their heads, but we hold them high."