Opposition leader Yair Lapid and MK Benny Gantz released an unexpected joint statement on Monday afternoon that made it clear that Gantz was back to taking his marching orders from Lapid and stopping all attempts to reach an agreement with the coalition on the judicial reform proposals.
Chairman of Yesh Atid, Yair Lapid, and Chairman of the National Camp, Benny Gantz, in a joint announcement:
“Every reaching out of our hand for the unity of Israel was met with trampling and refusal. Israel is on the brink of a national emergency, and Netanyahu refuses to stop.
We greatly respect and appreciate the efforts of the President of the State to reach broad negotiations and agreements.
But in order to reach honest and effective negotiations that will lead to preserving democracy and the unity of the people, Netanyahu must announce a complete, comprehensive and real halt to the legislative process.
All attempts at shortcuts are a trampling of real dialogue.”
Despite facing repeated pushback from his fellow opposition members, Gantz has been trying to find a way to hold open discussions with the coalition on the judicial reforms. Members of his party have supported and even proposed various judicial reforms themselves in the past.
According to reporter Amit Segal, a number of MKs in Gantz’s party have been holding quiet, behind-the-scenes discussions with the coalition on the judicial reform proposals.
According to Segal, this joint statement was specifically meant to permanently kill those quiet meetings and end any further attempts at discussion by Gantz’s MKs, which would have allowed all sides reach a mutually acceptable compromise on the judicial reform proposals.
Amit Segal: “ממש וידוא הריגה למגעים מאחורי הקלעים, שלחלקם היו אנשי המחנה הממלכתי שותפים.”
After Gantz’s previous attempt to negotiate, MK Meirav Michaeli (Labor) made it clear to Gantz that the opposition would accept nothing less than total victory against the judicial reform bill.
A recent survey by Direct Polls shows that Lapid is starting to lose popularity to Gantz, and the majority of Gantz’s voters want him discussing the judicial reform with the coalition. If Gantz isn’t afraid of the anarchists turning on him, it may only be a matter of time before Gantz’s people try again.