Likud Says Netanyahu Can Promote Book in Campaign But They Won’t Pay for It

By Hamodia Staff

Leader of the Opposition and head of the Likud party Binyamin Netanyahu in a press conference on Monday. (Avshalom Sassoni/Flash90)

YERUSHALAYIM — Opposition leader and Likud party chairman Binyamin Netanyahu can promote his new book as part of the election campaign, but he can’t use party funds to do it.

That was the ruling of the Likud’s legal adviser, according to the Kan public broadcaster on Monday.

“The legal opinion of Likud’s legal adviser allows the book to be referred to, but not promoted financially,” the party acknowledged in a statement.

At issue is promotion of the autobiography “Bibi: My Story” on Netanyahu’s social media accounts, which Kan said receive hundreds of thousands of shekels from Likud, most of that from taxpayer money. Israeli law allows funding from public coffers of the major parties for electoral expenses.

The book, initially scheduled for publication after the November 1 elections, has been reset for release in Hebrew on October 14, in English edition on the 19th.

In another Likud legal hassle on Monday, the party and former Yamina MK Amichai Chikli filed an appeal with the High Court to strike down the decision by the Central Elections Committee disqualifying him from running for Knesset on the Likud list.

The committee accepted a petition that argued that Chikli had not formally resigned from the Knesset in a timely manner after leaving Yamina, as had been required.

The petition claims that “the injustice caused to former MK Chikli screams to the heavens,” and that “the basic constitutional right to vote and be elected” had been violated by his disqualification.

Netanyahu has said that if reelected, he would appoint Chikli to a ministerial post if the court rejects the petition.

Essentially, Chikli and Likud argue that he had relied on an agreement overseen by the Yerushalayim District Court that granted him eligibility to join the Likud list. However, the court did not have ultimate authority over Chikli’s status, which rested with the Central Elections Committee, according to The Jerusalem Post.

“It is impossible to accept a situation in which a member of the Knesset and a party act according to the recommendation of a legally authorized court sitting in a panel of three judges, and then find themselves in front of a broken trough,” Chikli and Likud wrote in Monday’s appeal.

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