Shaul Mofaz
Photo: Gil Yohanan
Benjamin Netanyahu
Photo: Gil Yohanan

Likud ministers: PM using Kadima

While senior Likud members postulate broadened Coalition's days are numbered, officials affiliated with Minister Mofaz seek to prevent faction from crumbling

Likud ministers postulated on Friday that the new broadened Coalition quite possibly won't last long, and that Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu will call for general elections once an alternative to the Tal Law is passed with the help of Kadima Knesset members.


"Netanyahu has become a political trickster," one senior Likud member said. "It wouldn't come as a surprise if we witnessed a 'use and throw away' ploy, at the end of which Netanyahu would go to elections after passing the Tal Law, winning public support and blowing up the Coalition because of next year's budget."



The Tal Law, which effectively grants army service exemptions to haredim, has found itself in the center of the political tumult in recent weeks.


Meanwhile, only days after Kadima joined the Coalition, officials closely associated with Minister Shaul Mofaz have begun seeking ways to prevent the faction from breaking up, Ynet has learned. The officials are in talks with Likud members over the possibility of repealing a legislation that enables a faction to break apart once there are at least seven Knesset members wishing to secede.


The legislation – dubbed the "Mofaz Law" – was passed at the beginning of the current Knesset term and was meant to allow a group of seven Right-leaning MKs, headed by Mofaz, to quit Kadima and join Likud. Prior to the ratification of the law, one third of the faction's members would have to wish to split off in order for the partition to take place.


New centrist party?

With tensions running high following Mofaz' decision to join the government, a group of Knesset members who support former Kadima leader Tzipi Livni have begun discussing the possibility of quitting and laying the groundwork for a new, more Center-leaning party.


Some officials within the party have expressed displeasure with the impending development, and are therefore seeking to bar it from happening by annulling the Mofaz Law and reinstating the one-third quorum requirement.


Mofaz staunchly opposed the ratification of the legislation in 2009, slamming Netanyahu and the Likud for passing it. Some Kadima members are now seeking to kill two birds with one stone – annulling the law and stopping Livini's supporters from forming a separate faction.


Senior Kadima officials confirmed that the issue is under discussion, but noted that it is unclear when and how it is to be acted upon. Senior Likud members confirmed the talks as well, positing that it is quite possible that an attempt to block to legislation is not far off in the future.


"There are few instances when wishes and political interests coincide, and everything works out well," one Likud member said. "This step is very likely to happen."




פרסום ראשון: 05.11.12, 17:39
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