Steinitz condemns lack of stability in Israeli gov´t (JERUSALEM POST) By JPOST.COM STAFF, LAHAV HARKOV 05/01/12)
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Finance Minister Yuval Steinitz on Tuesday condemned the lack of
stability in the Israeli political system, hinting that he was
against the prospect of early elections.
The election date is currently set for October 22, 2013, but most
major political parties have already set out on the campaign trail
and declared that they are ready and waiting for elections.
Speaking at a Finance Committee meeting, Steinitz said that "it looks
like we´re sliding towards early elections. This phenomenon,
consistent with the last 25 years, can not be ignored. Elections are
"We need to ensure the future in a way that makes us more stable," he
said, "either by changing the parliamentary system or by adopting a
Steinitz added that he hopes the government will find a way to work
out their disagreements, but stated that if they don´t he hopes the
next Knesset will find a way to ensure greater stability in the
Israeli political system.
Since the finance minister is very close to Prime Minister Binyamin
Netanyahu, if he believes the Israeli political system requires a
revamp, it is likely Netanyahu thinks so as well.
Finance Committee Chairman Moshe Gafni (UTJ), who spoke prior to
Steinitz, slammed the idea of early general elections, saying that
they would cost millions and would cause no significant change in the
"According to the polls, nothing dramatic will happen." he said. "The
top party will not be replaced. We´re just taking NIS 400 million
from the budget and no one can explain why."
Gafni added that "the market will be harmed to the tune of billions,
because reforms will stop indefinitely." He also hinted that
elections could lead to corruption, saying "I don´t know what they´ll
promise in the elections to all sorts of tycoons."
On Monday, political parties were active in calling for early
elections, even from parties within the governing coalition. Yisrael
Beytenu head, Foreign Minister Avigdor Liberman, said that “the
interest of the state requires an election as soon as possible,”
adding that his party would become the second-largest party in the
Kadima head Shaul Mofaz said that his party will be ready for
elections “any day, any hour, any year,” but in his opinion, October
16 is the ideal, as it is after the High Holy Days and Succot.
Leader of the Sephardi ultra-orthodox Shas party, Interior Minister
Eli Yishai, said “We are more ready than anyone else. We’re active,
we work fast and our staff is already campaigning.”
Defense Minister Ehud Barak of the Independence party also expressed
confidence that his party will pass the elections threshold in
upcoming elections, and said he does not think it matters whether the
elections are in August, September or October.
At her faction´s meeting, Labor leader Shelly Yacimovich said
that “we moved the process of early elections – the train left the
station because of our bill [to dissolve the Knesset],” adding that
she prefers that elections be held as early as possible, because a
long election season is bad for the country, and also because Labor
is polling well. (© 1995-2011, The Jerusalem Post 05/01/12)
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