(September 18, 2019 / JNS) The right-wing Yamina alliance announced shortly after polls closed on Tuesday night that it is breaking break into three separate parties. Yamina leader Ayelet Shaked announced the move in a letter delivered to Knesset Speaker Yuli Edelstein.
Shaked and Naftali Bennett will now lead the New Right Party; Rafi Peretz will lead the Jewish Home Party; and Bezalel Smotrich will lead the National Union Party. The three parties united into a “technical bloc” after the April 9 election to ensure they would all cross the minimum electoral threshold of 3.25 percent.
Speaking to the media at Yemina headquarters in Ramat Gan shortly after the announcement, Shaked suggested that she does not support dissolving the alliance, and said the parties would still negotiate a coalition agreement as a single bloc.
“We have to keep promises made to the electorate,” she said, “but we also need to see what’s right for the State of Israel, the ideological right and religious Zionism.”
Exit polls released on Tuesday night showed Yamina winning between six and eight seats. If Yamina wins six seats, each of its constituent parties will receive two Knesset seats; if it wins eight seats, the New Right will get a third, meaning that Shaken, Bennett and New Right No. 3 would all make it into the Knesset.
According to Shaked, Yamina will recommend to Israel’s President Reuven Rivlin that Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu form a government.
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