Yacimovich and Herzog.
(photo credit: MARC ISRAEL SELLEM)
The executive committee of Labor’s secretariat made a long-awaited decision Thursday to set a July 31 date for a party convention that will vote on a proposal by chairman Isaac Herzog to hold the party’s next leadership race in July 2017.
The race was supposed to be held by May 2016 according to Labor’s constitution, but Herzog got the party’s institutions to postpone the race and then stalled setting a date for months. Only after Secretary-General MK Hilik Bar put his foot down and insisted that a date be set by the end of the month did Herzog agree to enable a process that could result in his replacement to begin.
Both Herzog and Bar praised the decision to hold the convention. But Herzog’s rivals immediately criticized the July 2017 date.
“We cannot wait any longer,” MK Erel Margalit stated. “The leadership race must be held immediately in order to present an alternative to Israel’s dangerous prime minister. I will do everything possible to ensure that the race will be sooner.”
MK Shelly Yacimovich loyalist Opher Kornfeld voted against the decision because he believes the process of replacing Herzog must be expedited.
Labor MK Eitan Broshi on the other hand said he was happy that the elections may only be held in a year, because he believes it could give enough time to possible contenders who are not MKs to enter the race.
There are those in Labor who are hoping that the race will be joined by a former IDF chief of staff, such as Benny Gantz or Gabi Ashkenazi.