Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu Wins Re-election

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Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu Wins Re-election
It was a tight race between the controversial right-wing prime minister and his closest opponent, centrist former general Benny Gantz.
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Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has won a fifth term in office.

His closest opponent's party — the Blue and White party — conceded defeat Wednesday, clearing the path for Netanyahu to set up a coalition government. 

Both candidates previously claimed victory in Tuesday's election. But, at the time, it was too close to call. 

On Wednesday morning, leaders from five right-wing parties pledged their support for Netanyahu, which gives him as many as 65 seats in Israel's 120-member Parliament. 

President Donald Trump called Netanyahu from Air Force One to congratulate him on his victory. 

Netanyahu is now Israel's longest-serving prime minister. The country's first Prime Minister David Ben-Gurion served in the position for 13 years. Netanyahu was first elected to the seat in 1996 and then again in 2009. 

Additional reporting from Newsy affiliate CNN.