Senior Yamina officials said behind-closed-doors that the party might agree to join Netanyahu’s government, despite all its promises, Reshet Bet radio reported Sunday. Yamina believes that if the choice would be between a deterioration to a fifth election and a sitting in a Netanyahu coalition, they would prefer to enter a coalition partnership with the Likud.
This was the clearest confirmation on the part of Yamina of Gideon Saar’s New hope campaign against them that saturated the social networks recently, saying that a vote for Bennet is a vote for Netanyahu.
The Yamina concession also contradicts Bennett’s assertion that he is the only qualified leader on the right to replace Netanyahu as prime minister.
Last week, Yamina refused to sign the declaration of allegiance to the prime minister which was signed by the Haredi parties (and indirectly by Bezalel Smotrich’s Religious Zionism party).
Last Wednesday, Bennett said “the prime minister is unable to form and hold a stable government, it is time to replace him and that will only be carried out from the right.”
Bennet also vowed that “Yamina will not sit in a government led by the left, including with Lapid as prime minister.” This was in response to an interviewer saying, “Is Lapid on the left? He himself says he is on the right.”
Bennett replied: “He can also say he is a kangaroo. We will not sit in the government led by the left, but we have no problem with Lapid participating in the government. The choice is either to continue shuffling with Netanyahu or a change and a leapfrog under my leadership.”
The Yamina party said in response to Sunday’s report about its willingness to join a Netanyahu government: “Only the Bennett-led Yamina party will replace Netanyahu, maintain the rule of the right, and pull Israel out of the mud.”
New Hope Chairman Gideon Saar has taken a more moderate line than Bennett’s regarding Yesh Atid Chairman Yair Lapid and told Reshet Bet radio that he does not rule out a rotation government with him.
Saar referred to the declaration of allegiance to Netanyahu which was signed by the Haredi parties, saying: “Netanyahu also failed with this move. He signed them because he knows he has no government. He is only trying to build a bloc to take Israel to a fifth election. Netanyahu in 2021 prefers his personal interests over the good of the state, otherwise, he would have moved aside. He is shamelessly sticking the country for two years in four election campaigns.”
Last Friday, a Panels Politics and Maariv survey predicted:
- Likud 29 seats
- Yesh Atid 17
- New Hope 14
- Yamina 11
- Joint Arab List 9
- Shas 8
- United Torah Judaism 7
- Israel Beiteinu 7
- Blue&White 5
- Labor 5
- Meretz 4
- Religious Zionism 4