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Israel's election committee has published the results of Monday's election showing Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's right-wing bloc with 58 seats — three short of the parliamentary majority needed to form a government.

Why it matters: Worse still for Netanyahu, particularly in the wake of what looked like a remarkable victory, a majority might now be uniting behind an effort to effectively end his political career. His corruption trial, meanwhile, is set to begin in just 12 days.

Breaking it down: Netanyahu's Likud Party won the most seats in Monday's election, with 36. Allied right-wing parties won an additional 22.

  • The Blue and White Party, led by Netanyahu's centrist rival Benny Gantz, won 33 seats. The liberal Labor Party won another 7 seats.
  • The Joint List of predominantly Arab Parties had its best-ever showing, winning 15 seats.
  • Former Defense Minister Avigdor Lieberman's party, which split from Netanyahu in 2018 and had been refusing to align with either major party, won 7.

The big picture: Israeli politics have been deadlocked for nearly a year, with Netanyahu and Gantz both failing to form majority governments after the two previous elections.

Driving the news: But this time could be different. Lieberman, who previously pushed for a Netanyahu-Gantz unity government, now says he will recommend Gantz to form the next government.

  • If the Joint List does the same, that will put 62 seats behind Gantz, at least temporarily, and make it likely that President Reuven Rivlin will offer him a mandate to form a government.
  • For now, the Joint List has said it's open to supporting Gantz but only if he makes "a change truly in the direction of peace and equality."
  • If he does get the first crack at forming a government, Gantz will also control the parliamentary agenda during that process.

Between the lines: That's crucial because Lieberman has also said he'd support a bill to prevent anyone under criminal indictment from forming a government. That's clearly targeted at Netanyahu.

  • If an anti-Netanyahu coalition does come together in the coming days, it will be deeply unstable.
  • Lieberman's party and the Joint List are bitter rivals, and it's unclear whether they'd be willing to unite behind a Gantz government.
  • But even a temporary alliance could be enough to ensure that if Israel is forced to hold an unprecedented fourth election, Netanyahu won't be a candidate for prime minister.
  • Netanyahu has no clear path to the majority needed to form a government, though he's pulled rabbits out of his hat before.

The bottom line: It's still far too early to declare the end of Netanyahu's reign as Israel's longest-serving prime minister. But it's becoming increasingly clear what the end might look like.

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Joe Biden is calling for the winner of November's presidential election to select Ruth Bader Ginsburg's replacement on the Supreme Court.

What he's saying: "[L]et me be clear: The voters should pick the president and the president should pick the justice for the Senate to consider," Biden said. "This was the position the Republican Senate took in 2016 when there were almost 10 months to go before the election. That's the position the United States Senate must take today, and the election's only 46 days off.

Trump, McConnell to move fast to replace Ginsburg

Photo: Alex Wong/Getty Images

President Trump will move within days to nominate his third Supreme Court justice in just three-plus short years — and shape the court for literally decades to come, top Republican sources tell Axios.

Driving the news: Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and Senate Republicans are ready to move to confirm Trump's nominee before Election Day, just 46 days away, setting up one of the most consequential periods of our lifetimes, the sources say.

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Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

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