As many as 10 percent of the 10,000 members rightwing activist Moshe Feiglin
brought to the Likud left for Habayit Hayehudi during the religious-Zionist
party’s membership drive that ended on Sunday, Feiglin estimated on
Feiglin said the 46,000 people who joined Habayit Hayehudi were
“an objectively respectful number” and “a great accomplishment for a party that
barely crossed the [2% ] electoral threshold.” But he said he expected there to
be significant buyers remorse among new members of Habayit
“Whoever left the Likud will regret it within a year when they
see how irrelevant Habayit Hayehudi will be,” Feiglin said. “The point was never
whether they would have a successful drive but what their product would be. The
people who joined will soon see how little Habayit Hayehudi has to offer and
then the storm in the teacup will blow over.”
Feiglin warned that taking
right-wing votes from the Likud was dangerous because it could result in
President Shimon Peres asking the head of a left-wing party to form the next
coalition instead of Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu. He said it was also
likely that Netanyahu would leave a combined Habayit Hayehudi- National Union
slate out of the coalition.
“Let’s say they get 10 seats, which they
won’t,” Feiglin said. “It either means sending right-wing seats to the
opposition or them being a coalition partner with slightly more influence than
the little they have now. The Likud not being large enough to form the next
government could be the result of this drive. Where are their votes going to
come from? Not from the Left. Only from the Likud.”
Feiglin said Likud
ministers had proven that they serve Judea and Samaria well in order to receive
support from his Manhigut Yehudit (Jewish Leadership) movement and other
right-wing groups in the Likud ahead of the next party primary.
Hayehudi released numbers from its membership drive late on
The three cities that have the most new party members are
Jerusalem, Petah Tikva and Kiryat Ata.
With some 85% of the membership
forms examined, 14% have been disqualified for various reasons.
reported that 58% of the people who joined the party were 45 and
“We succeeded in returning the party to the young people,” said
the head of the membership drive, Rabbi Daniel Tropper.