AFTER HEZBOLLAH ATTACKS – Likud party projected to receive 25 seats, the Zionist Camp 24.

After Hezbollah strike, polls put Likud in the lead

Netanyahu’s party beats out the Zionist Camp by one seat in three separate surveys for the first time in weeks

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu leads a Likud faction meeting at the Knesset, on November 24, 2014. (photo credit: Miriam Alster/Flash90)

Three election polls published on Thursday night and Friday placed Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s Likud party one seat ahead of Isaac Herzog and Tzipi Livni’s Zionist Camp for the first time in weeks.

The results followed a deadly strike by Hezbollah on the northern border with Lebanon Wednesday, which killed two IDF soldiers, and came shortly after the Knesset parties finalized their slates for the March 2015 elections.

According to a Maariv poll, the Likud party was projected to receive 25 seats, and the Zionist Camp 24. Some 52 percent of respondents said they trust Netanyahu on security matters, 59% expressed confidence in Defense Minister Moshe Ya’alon, and 85% said they trusted the Israel Defense Forces. Ya’alon was also seen to be the favored candidate for defense minister at 25%, followed by Jewish Home party leader Naftali Bennett at 17%, and Amos Yadlin at 14%.

Some 44% said they want Netanyahu as prime minister. In a separate question on the premiership — which excluded Netanyahu from the list — 28% said they would want Herzog to lead, followed by 12% for Hatnua party leader Tzipi Livni, 9% for Yesh Atid leader Yair Lapid, 4% for Foreign Minister Avigdor Liberman, and 3% for both Economy Minister Naftali Bennett and Kulanu leader Moshe Kahlon.