Edelstein likely to become new Knesset Speaker

Rivlin, who has previously held the position, dropped out of the race following reports that Netanyahu would not back him.

By
March 14, 2013 12:29
2 minute read.
Public Diplomacy and Diaspora Affairs Minister Yul

Public Diplomacy and Diaspora Affairs Minister Yuli Edelstei. (photo credit: Courtesy)

 
X

Dear Reader,
As you can imagine, more people are reading The Jerusalem Post than ever before. Nevertheless, traditional business models are no longer sustainable and high-quality publications, like ours, are being forced to look for new ways to keep going. Unlike many other news organizations, we have not put up a paywall. We want to keep our journalism open and accessible and be able to keep providing you with news and analyses from the frontlines of Israel, the Middle East and the Jewish World.

As one of our loyal readers, we ask you to be our partner.

For $5 a month you will receive access to the following:

  • A user uxperience almost completely free of ads
  • Access to our Premium Section and our monthly magazine to learn Hebrew, Ivrit
  • Content from the award-winning Jerusalem Repor
  • A brand new ePaper featuring the daily newspaper as it appears in print in Israel

Help us grow and continue telling Israel’s story to the world.

Thank you,

Ronit Hasin-Hochman, CEO, Jerusalem Post Group
Yaakov Katz, Editor-in-Chief

UPGRADE YOUR JPOST EXPERIENCE FOR 5$ PER MONTH Show me later Don't show it again

Yuli Edelstein was expected to be chosen as speaker of the 19th Knesset Thursday, replacing Reuven Rivlin, who was previously speaker of the 16th and 18th Knessets.

Rivlin dropped out of the race to become Knesset Speaker after reports surfaced that Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu did not support Rivlin for the position. Rivlin's spokesman denied reports of a conversation in which the prime minister told Rivlin that he would not back him. In fact, the spokesman said, Netanyahu’s chief of staff Gil Shefer promised him on Thursday that the prime minister wants Rivlin to be speaker.

Be the first to know - Join our Facebook page.


Edelstein has been talking to Likud Beytenu faction members to convince them to vote for him, and hopes to meet with all 31 of the joint list’s MKs before the coalition is formed and they vote for the next Speaker.

“He doesn’t want to disrespect Rivlin or start a big media campaign; it’s just a series of quiet meetings,” a source close to Edelstein explained.

The minister had the courtesy to wait until this Sunday, when Rivlin finished observing the shiva mourning period for his brother Eliezer, to begin the series of meetings.

A source close to Rivlin said the two-time Knesset Speaker received a promise from Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu that he would endorse Rivlin for the position.

“Rivlin ran in the Likud primary with the slogan ‘Our Knesset Speaker,’” the source said. “He was elected to this job. The only other person in the Likud who was elected to a specific position is the prime minister.”



Both Edelstein’s camp and Yisrael Beytenu would not comment on reports that former foreign minister Avigdor Liberman supports Edelstein, and the source close to Rivlin pointed out that part of the merger agreement between Likud and Yisrael Beytenu is that Liberman will back anyone Netanyahu appoints.

A senior Likud source posited that, since Rivlin has made no secret of his intentions to run for president next year, and he is widely considered Netanyahu’s preferred candidate for Knesset Speaker, Edelstein is positioning himself to take Rivlin’s place next year.

Another Likud source expressed doubt that Netanyahu promised anything to Rivlin, saying the prime minister would have said so publicly if he supported the outgoing Speaker’s reelection.

He also expressed concern that Rivlin would be unnecessarily forgiving and generous to MKs who he hopes would vote for him as president.

“Knesset Speaker is a respectable job and should not just be a jumping off point to another position, like president,” Edelstein’s camp added. “Yuli, a former prisoner of Zion with 17 years of experience as an MK, is well liked by all factions of the house and is known in parliaments and Jewish communities around the world.”

Related Content

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu
August 31, 2014
Prime minister to Channel 1: I’ll be running again in next election

By Gil Stern Stern HOFFMAN