Sunday, January 6, 2013

A Vote for Bayit Yehudi, is a Vote for Yechimovich?

As he is trying to keep Eli Ben-Dahan and Orit Struck below the radar, amid attacks from Likud Beitenu, Naftali Bennet may turn out to be a disappointment to all those voters coming from the right, at least according to a reports in Israel Hayom's weekday newspaper.

Despite remaining heavily favored to form the next coalition, Likud Beitenu's continued downward slide in the pollsm and Yechmicvocih's declaration not to join the netnaayhu government,  has led to some speculation and predictions, even some fantasies by Tzipi Livni, which suggest that victory is no sure thing for Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.
The scenario of Labor Chairwoman Shelly Yechimovich, Yesh Atid Chairman Yair Lapid, and Hatnu'a Chairwoman Tzipi Livni announcing the merging of their factions following the Jan. 22 elections, might lead to President's Peres preference of assigning Yechimovich or Livni to form a coalition government.

According to Israel Hayom, while Aryeh Deri’s Shas Party will obviously have no problem joining the coalition, and neither will United Torah Judaism, the key is in the hands of Naftali Bennett. 
"One can certainly state that Bennett would hold much greater value for Yechimovich than he would for Netanyahu. With Yechimovich as prime minister, Bennett could perhaps obtain one of the three most senior portfolios, since the Labor chief would be unable to form a government without him.

"An interesting aspect regarding Bennett’s campaign is his party’s assaults on the Left. The Bayit Yehudi is almost exclusively aiming its fire at Livni, while laying off Yechimovich. Aside from a few attacks on marginal issues,Yechimovich can feel at ease with Bennett around. 

"Likud officials have long been suspicious that Bennett is cooking up a surprise plan for immediately after the elections. That is why they tried — without success — to win back the Knesset seats that polls show have migrated to Habayit Hayehudi in the last month.

"Now, however, it isn’t just Likud that is showing signs of apprehension. Officials within Habayit Hayehudi are holding their breath over a possible surprise move by Bennett.... Habayit Hayehudi activists are growing fearful that something is going awry, and that someone will drag their party to a place they do not wish to be in. There may even be an attempt, God forbid, to bring the Left to power."