Elections for the tenth Knesset were held in Israel on 30 June, 1981. Despite last minute polls suggesting a victory for Shimon Peres's Alignment, Menachem Begin's Likud won by just one seat. Voter turnout was 77.8%.
|Party||Votes||%||Seats at start|
end of session
|Alignment 1 4||708,536||36.6%||47||49|
|National Religious Party 2 5||95,232||4.9%||6||5|
|Total valid votes||1,937,366||100%|
|Rafi – National List 3||-||-||0||1|
|Movement for the Renewal of Social Zionism 3||-||-||0||1|
|Haim Druckman 2||-||-||0||1|
|Gesher – Zionist Religious Centre 5||-||-||0||0|
1 Two MKs defected from Likud to the Alignment.
2 Haim Druckman left the National Religious Party and sat as an independent MK.
3 Telem split into Ometz and the Movement for the Renewal of Social Zionism.
4 Ratz joined the Alignment but then broke away again.
5 Two MKs left the National Religious Party and formed Gesher – Zionist Religious Centre before returning to the NRP two weeks later.
Kach however would get one seat in the 1984 elections after many unsuccesful runs. It is notable that no solely Israeli Arab parties were elected to the tenth Knesset (despite its largely Arab support, Hadash is a mixed party, and included the Jewish Meir Vilner amongst its MKs), the only occasion on which this has happened.
Yitzhak Shamir formed the 20th government on 10 October, 1983 after Begin had resigned for health reasons. He included the same parties in his coalition, but with 20 ministers. The next elections were held on 23 July, 1984.