Levy-Abekasis Denies Reports She Might Bolt From Left


Gesher party leader Orly Levy-Abekasis said on Wednesday that reports she is a candidate to defect from her left-wing partners for the Likud-led coalition were post-election propaganda.

Likud officials have been saying they are in contact with various opposition MKs about bolting their parties for the right-wing bloc to give it the needed 61-MK majority, but so far nothing concrete has come of it.

Levy-Abekasis issued a sharp denial on Wednesday, saying the reports were “completely untrue. There aren’t and have not been any contacts with any political operatives. Everything that has been published thus far is nothing but spin.”

Likewise, she dismissed a story that her father, former Likud minister David Levy, could receive the right’s support for a presidential run should she choose to defect.

“The attempt to bring my father’s name into an offer is absurd, and could only occur to those who think anything can be bought.”

Only one MK would even admit to having been approached by Likud — Blue and White MK Meirav Cohen. She claimed on Wednesday that Netanyahu’s part offered her pensioners or welfare portfolio, but she told them no.

Heaping scorn on rejection, she said in a video post: “I despise the phenomenon of political defectors. In my view it’s a cynical, opportunistic step whose entire goal is to get some job.”

“Political defectors are like disposable tableware — you use them and then you throw them in the trash,” she added.

Nevertheless, there was a call put out by Likud and Labor municipality leaders for a right-wing alliance with Labor in order to form a government.

Maaleh Adumim mayor Benny Kashriel and Yokneam mayor Shimon Alfasi spearheaded the move. In a joint statement addressed to Netanyahu, they said:

“The order of the hour is the establishment of a broad government in collaboration with the Labor Party, based on common grounds and a social economic outline that will address various issues and social agendas of the Labor and Likud parties for strengthening of the State of Israel.”

“The people of Israel expect a government to emerge and a fourth election avoided. Therefore, there is no [other] choice but to form a broad government that will include Zionist Knesset members, supporters of the State of Israel dedicated to its wellbeing.”

Updated Wednesday, March 4, 2020 at 4:14 pm add info