MK Orly Levi-Abekasis, who initially did not recommend to the president any candidate to form a government, stated in a social media post on Sunday that she is joining the MKs demanding that Prime Minister Binyanim Netanyahu be granted the mandate to form the government.
Levy-Abekasis broke off last month from the Labor-Gesher-Meretz alliance (which incidentally no longer exists either), citing her opposition to a potential government led by Blue and White chairman Benny Gantz that was supported by the Joint List of Arab parties.
“A new situation – a realistic conclusion,” Levi-Abekasis opened her post, noting that “Gantz’s request to the president to extend his mandate is an admission of his inability to form a government.”
She said Gantz’s appeal to the president for an extension beyond the 28 days he received “is intended to gain time as a means of exerting pressure in the deadlocked negotiations. Pressure whose purpose is to squeeze from the other side further concessions and political centers of power – this in addition to the rotation and individual representation that goes against any logical proportion in a normal situation.
“Negotiations that started out of concern about the danger of the coronavirus have become a strange political trick accompanied by threats to the prime minister: If you do not meet our demand, we will submit to the Knesset bills that will personally disqualify you from being appointed,” she argued.
“It’s amazing to hear such selective morals from the mouths of those who promised clean politics,” Levi-Abekasis wrote.
She wrote three reasons why Netanyahu should now receive the mandate to form a coalition: the Likud is the largest party in the Knesset; the prime minister’s bloc is the largest with 59 seats; and the transition government is continuing to function and not come apart.
The parties that make up Netanyahu’s bloc — Likud, Shas, United Torah Judaism and Yamina — have 58 MKs, with Levy-Abekasis including herself as the 59th MK.