Winner Chaim Oron
Photo: Ofer Amram
Photo: Gil Yohanan
Ran Cohen
Photo: Gil Yohanan
Photo: Gil Yohanan
Zahava Gal-On
Photo: Gil Yohanan

MK Oron voted new Meretz chairman

Oron to replace Beilin after easily beating out MKs Cohen, Gal-On in chairmanship race. Beilin says will remain politically active

Knesset Member Chaim Oron won Meretz's internal elections Tuesday night and will replace Yossi Beilin as the leftist party's chairman.  


Oron won 54.5% of the votes, while fellow MKs Ran Cohen and Zahava Gal-On gained 27.1% and 18.1% of the votes, respectively.


A second election round will not be necessary as the winner gained more than 50% of the votes.


Oron will attempt to retrieve some of the party's influence, which has been waning over the past 15 years. "I have received the authority and responsibility to make Meretz more powerful and influential," he said in his victory speech, "we stand before a difficult chapter in the life of the party." 


Earlier on Tuesday Cohen filed a complaint with the dovish party's election committee over suspected irregularities at some of the polling stations. Gal-On, for her part, demanded that three polling stations in Dir el-Asad be disqualified, claiming that her representatives were prevented from overseeing the voting there and were physically assaulted.


Outgoing chairman Beilin dropped out of the chairmanship race after Oron declared his candidacy a few months ago.


"Today is an important day, because Meretz is gaining a worthy leader and following the correct path of the opposition," Beilin said after the results came in. "I intend to assist Jumas (Oron's nickname) in any way possible, and remain politically active."


After running for the first time as a unified party in 1992 (composed of Ratz, Mapam, and Shinui), Meretz raked in 12 mandates. Since then the party has declined, and in the last elections won only five seats in the Knesset.


פרסום ראשון: 03.18.08, 23:41
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