Shlomo Maoz, an economist whose remarks against Israel's "Ashkenazi elite" caused a stirr earlier this year and cost him his position at the Excellence Nessuah investment house, is expected to announce his decision to join the Likud Party.
Maoz has spoken with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu over the weekend, and the two agreed that the former should contend in the party's primaries.
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Maoz' decision could cause a Knesset member to lose his parliament seat in the next election, especially considering the abundance of contenders vying for a spot on the party's ticket. On Thursday, the prime minister and Avigdor Lieberman announced they were uniting the Likud and Yisrael Beiteinu under one Knesset list.
Maoz is expected to get much support from Netanyahu in the upcoming primary elections.
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A top politician from the Likud branded the move as a "cynical and transparent maneuver meant to put a token Mizrahi on Likud's Knesset list."
"With Moshe Kahlon's departure and Aryeh Deri's return to Shas, Netanyahu has realized that he is losing some of the Mizrahi vote, which is why he is trying to recruit any viable candidate who could be labeled Mizrahi."
Maoz often appears on Channel 10's finance television show "Layla Calcali" as an economic analyst.
In January he was fired by the Excellence Nessuah investment house after making inappropriate remarks against Ashkenazim at a panel held at Sapir College.
During the panel, the economist said that "Bank Leumi is a white man's bank," adding that "Only white people can get a job there." He went on to blast the leaders of the social protest and claim that the High Court of Justice is a "white institution."
Meanwhile, MK Nachman Shai has announced that he is quitting Kadima and joining the Labor Party. He has notified Labor Chairwoman Shelly Yachimovich that the will contend in the party's primaries.
"It's time to think big, act big and join forces by way of national and moral responsibility," he said. "The Labor Party offers a strong alternative to a Netanyahu-Lieberman government."
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