Preliminary results are in for the primary election by which the Kadima party, the lead party in Israel's governing coalition, has chosen a new leader. Exit polls indicate that Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni has finished first with 48% of the vote. If those polls are accurate, her percentage is sufficient to win in this first round of voting. Had no candidate received more than 40%, there would have been a runoff vote.
If Livni can successfully conclude negotiations with smaller parties to form a new coalition government, she will then become prime minister.
It seems certain that no significant progress can be made on any Mideast peace plan, until new Israeli and American leaders are in place.
UPDATE: The vote count shows a much more narrow margin than the exit polls indicated. But the result is the same: a first-ballot victory for Livni.