Habayit Hayehudi Chairman Naftali Bennett
Photo: Ido Erez
Monday: Netanyahu, Bennett to meet for first time in 5 years
Prime minister, Habayit Hayehudi chairman to meet Monday afternoon as part of ongoing coalition negoatiations

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Habayit Hayehudi Chairman Naftali Bennett, who have not met for some five years, are scheduled to meet Monday afternoon at the Prime Minister’s Offices as part of the ongoing coalition negotiations.


Netanyahu met with Yesh Atid Chairman Yair Lapid a few days ago and said he would like to establish a broad government with "Lapid, Bennett, the haredim, (Tzipi) Livni and (Shaul) Mofaz."


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Habayit Hayehudi is prepared for the more advanced stages of coalition negotiations. Party representatives said they plan to place more emphasis on socio-economic issues, and to demand that a party member head the Knesset Finance Committee, which they consider to be the "faucet" of the budget.


"Everyone knows that we must implement important things in the country, such as centralization, increased competition between banks and taking care of the periphery. I am itching to get started on these issues," said Bennett Sunday morning to Ynet as he exited his home. "We must care not only for the middle class, but also for the weakest, the ones who need assistance – I promise to take care of them."


Netanyahu and Bennett: An end to the divide? 


In the last few days, Bennett has begun to draft a plan for reform in the area of socio-economics, with the cooperation of a team of advisors which includes the former head of the Prime Minister’s Office, Eyal Gabai.


The plan, which is called "The Social House," will be presented to the Likud-Beiteinu negotiations team, as part of the party’s demands. The program includes over 10 reforms, covering issues such as market competition, the cost of living and providing assistance for the weaker class.


"These are reforms which will be talked about for years," said a member of Habayit Hayehudi. "The upcoming government will get quite a workout implementing them. It should be remembered that the equality of the social burden, which we are promoting, on its own is not enough to solve the social issues."


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