MK Yair Lapid told a meeting of the Blue and White Knesset faction today that he would not insist on rotation as prime minister with MK Benny Gantz. Lapid's announcement followed frequent complaints by the Likud that rotation between Lapid and Gantz was delaying coalition negotiations between Blue and White and Likud.
"I'm willing to forego rotation for the sake of a unity government. Unity of the people and avoiding another election is much more important to me. I want this country to begin a process of healing its wounds," Lapid said. "One person with three indictments stands between us and a national unity government. This country needs a unity government headed by Blue and White and with the Likud, with Liberman, and with the Labor Party."
"We won't sit under a prime minister with a provisional indictment or an indictment against him. Israelis deserve more," Lapid added.
When the election results were announced, with the accompanying political deadlock, Lapid knew, even as early as late in the election campaign, that he would not be able to carry out the rotation agreement. At the same time, Lapid was unwilling to concede this during the campaign, if only to prove that rotation was not alienating center-left voters. Now that Blue and White is the largest party, Lapid wants the position of minister of foreign affairs, and has waived his agreement with Benny Gantz.
Before the meeting, Lapid and Liberman sat together in the dairy section of the Knesset cafeteria and spoke for 30 minutes. Liberman was accompanied by his granddaughter.
Published by Globes, Israel business news - en.globes.co.il - on October 3, 2019
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