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Netanyahu Trailing Slightly Before Israel’s Election Tomorrow

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is trailing ever so slightly behind his opponents in the Labor Party, just before tomorrow’s parliamentary election. That’s according to the latest and last poll before voters cast their ballots tomorrow.

More of Steve Inskeep’s reporting from Israel and Iran

Netanyahu has made the nuclear negotiations with Iran a big issue for himself in this election, speaking before a joint session of Congress on the matter about two weeks ago.

But could his focus on security with Iran have been to his detriment in this election?

Steve Inskeep, host of NPR’s Morning Edition, has been to both Israel and Iran in recent weeks, and he tells Here & Now’s Robin Young what it was like to be in each country, which are frequently at odds with one another.

“It would be hard to sort it out and say whether in the end this has helped Netanyahu, but you can say it hasn’t helped him enough, because he himself has acknowledged he may well lose this election,” Inskeep said.

Inskeep says almost all Israelis harbor a deep distrust about Iran. But the key is building international support for Israel — which Inskeep says is where Netanyahu has lost support.

Meantime in Iran, Inskeep says ordinary Iranians want a nuclear deal.

“They are desperate for this deal, I hope I’m not overstating it.” Inskeep said. ” They see so many economic opportunities opening up for Iran if Iran can open up to the world. And ordinary Iranians, they actually have a favorable opinion of Americans.”


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