Newly elected Habayit Hayehudi Chairman Naftali Bennett, who won the party primaries with 67% of the votes, has big plans. He is going after Likud supporters.
After Bennett's victory was announced Tuesday night, dozens of Habayit Hayehudi activists welcomed the new party chairman in Tel Aviv. Bennett opened his victory speech with thanking his opponent, who stated he was retiring from political life.
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"First thing, I want to thank MK Orlev," Bennett said. "We all have something to learn from your experience, your legacy and your history."
When Bennett announced he was running for party chair on May, many were surprised. But he ran a vigorous campaign by the end of which many felt that he has managed to revitalize religious Zionism.
'The State is not a piece of real-estate.' Bennett and his wife (Photo: Ofer Amram)
In leading the party, Bennett outlined his plans for the 19th Knesset by stating that his goal was "to be the biggest party in the government following Likud Beiteinu. If Netanyahu considers ceding land, I intend to do everything in my power to prevent it. The State is not a piece of real-estate up for negotiation."
On his triumphant night, Bennett vowed he would aim to raise the popularity of the party, and earn it many more than its current three Knesset seats.
To earn said popularity, Bennett plans to target Likud voters, as he is confident that his party is the only one that appeals to Israeli Jewish Zionists. "We have already enlisted many Likud voters from around the country," Bennett commented.
Moran Azulay is a Ynet and Yedioth Ahronoth correspondent
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