A Blue and White campaign billboard that contrasted Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and his far-Right allies with party leader Benny Gantz and his party members offering the caption "The Nation of Israel Lives." .
(photo credit: AMMAR AWAD / REUTERS)
Blue and White faced attacks from both sides of the political map over the weekend.
The Likud called upon Blue and White on Friday to fire their new American strategist, Joel Benenson, because of views the Likud termed extremist.
In a campaign ad released on Friday the Likud highlighted that when Benenson worked for Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton, he advised her to not bring up Israel. The ad also said Benenson led a campaign in favor of the passage of the Iran deal by president Barack Obama.
Hadash MK Ofer Kasif complained about a Blue and White ad attacking Netanyahu that charged that he had attempted to reach an agreement with Arab parties to prevent the dispersal of the Knesset. The ad referred to negotiations led by former Netanyahu chief of staff Natan Eshel with the United Arab List to support a possible minority coalition.
Meanwhile, attempts to unite the Center-Left ahead of the September 17 election continued over the weekend. Both Labor leader Amir Peretz and former prime minister Ehud Barak told Channel 12 that they do not have to be placed first on a joint list.
“I have no preconditions, I believe there should be unity and I will do everything possible to bring it about,” Barak said. “Personal questions will not stand in the way. I know that most Center-Left voters want me to lead the bloc, but there will be no personal considerations.”
Peretz said the week ahead would be full of fateful decisions. Channel 12 reported that scandal surrounding Barak’s ties with alleged pedophile Jeffrey Epstein made an alliance with his party less likely because Labor and Meretz want to paint themselves as clean of anti-corruption and contrast themselves with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.
Barak announced on Saturday night that his company would return money invested by Epstein.
KAN reported over the weekend that it was becoming increasingly likely that former minister Tzipi Livni would not make a political comeback, because she does not see how her return would help expand the Center-Left bloc.
In his interview, Barak said his party would insist on a constitution for Israel being written within a year of the government’s formation. He said the constitution would limit a prime minister to two terms and automatically make a prime minister quit if indicted.
“It won’t be easy but when I make a promise, I keep it,” Barak said.
מכתב פתוח לבני גנץ @gantzbe:
— Ofer Cassif עופר כסיף (@ofercass) July 13, 2019
1. לא סגרנו ולעולם לא נסגור שום עסקה עם נתניהו.
2. בלי קבלה שלנו כחלק לגיטימי מהחברה והפוליטיקה, לא תהיה ראש ממשלה לעולם.
3. מי שמוצא פסול בשיתוף פעולה עם ערבים הוא גזען, ולא ראוי להרכיב ממשלה. >> pic.twitter.com/x67qEYPmsH
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