Leaders of ‘Change’ Coalition Parties to Meet for First Time Sunday

YERUSHALAYIM -
A combination of file photos shows Yamina leader Naftali Bennett (L) and Yesh Atid party leader Yair Lapid. (Reuters/Ammar Awad/Amir Cohen)

The leaders of the eight member parties of the coalition formed by Yesh Atid leader Yair Lapid are due to meet on Sunday for the first time since the official announcement of the new government.

Prime Minister-designate Naftali Bennett is expected to reveal that Yamina party running mates — with the exception of MK Amichai Chikli — will vote in favor of the new government in the confidence vote of the Knesset which may not come until next Monday.

The coalition that aims to oust Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu seems increasingly likely to gain the necessary majority support in the Knesset, with a slim majority of 61 out of 120 MKs.

The members of the Yesh Atid, with 17 seats, Blue and White, 8, Yisrael Beyteinu, 7, New Hope, 6, Yamina – with seven seats but with only six MKs supporting the government, Labor, 7, Meretz, 6, and 4 from the Islamist Ra’am party.

In this context, the slightest defection could call everything into question, and a turnaround cannot be totally ruled out.