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Livni likely to announce resignation from Knesset

May 1, 2012 10:30

Rumors of early election left her little time to regroup within Kadima, likely leading to her decision to step down.

Former Kadima leader Tzipi Livni

Former Kadima leader Tzipi Livni_370. (photo credit:Nir Elias/Reuters)

Former opposition leader Tzipi Livni will meet with Knesset Speaker Reuven Rivlin on Tuesday afternoon, and will likely hand him a letter of resignation from her post in the Knesset.

The meeting is scheduled for 12:30 p.m., a statement from her office said.

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Livni lost her leadership position in the Kadima Partylast month to Shaul Mofaz, and has since been silent about her political future. Rumors of an early general election came soon after he party loss, leaving her little time to regroup within Kadima - a factor that likely finalized her decision to step down.

Kadima MK Yohanan Plesner answered rumors of Livni's departure Tuesday morning, saying the former party chair will find a way to remain involved in the Kadima "even if not from the Knesset benches."

"I am sorry to hear about [Livni's] rumored resignation," Plesner said in a written statement. "I respect her decision and thank her for her great contributions to the establishment of the Kadima Party."

"Kadima is important to Livni," the Kadima MK opined. "I believe she will find a way to be a part of us even if not from the Knesset benches."

Labor Party leader Shelly Yacimovich also said she regretted Livni's decision, but encouraged the former Kadima chair to stay in politics.

Livni was a worthy and honest person with great political experience, Yacimovich said in a written statement.

Her lack in the Knesset will be felt, she said, adding that she hoped the former Kadima chair will remain active in political life.

Likud MK Danny Danon took a harsher tone over Livni's upcoming announcement, saying that there is no place for former Kadima members in the Likud Party. "[Kadima] will find itself sinking fast, and very soon we'll see MKs from Kadima going the way of Livni and abandoning the sinking ship, leaving it pair by pair," he said. "What is certain, is that there is no place in Likud for them."

On Monday, opposition leader and Kadima head Shaul Mofaz said that his party will be ready for elections "any day, any hour, any year," but added that he preferred date is October 16, as it is after the High Holy Days and Succot.

“No one should get too excited by polls – we are the only alternative to the Netanyahu government,” he said. “We will stand strong and determined.”
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