Shaul Mofaz 370.
(photo credit: Marc Israel Sellem)
The rebellion inside Kadima gained force Thursday when MKs in the party
announced that they would break off if the government decides to raise the
Until now, it was thought that the split would only take
place if the government fails to come up with an alternative to the “Tal Law”
that would equalize the burden of IDF service and Kadima leader Shaul Mofaz
decides to stay in the coalition.
Now the rebels are saying that they
have other excuses that would enable them to take at least the minimum seven MKs
needed to split a faction. They said that raising the VAT from its current 16
percent to 17% was reason enough to leave.
“Why should I stay part of a
coalition that would hurt so many people that way?” one rebel MK
Finance Minister Yuval Steinitz denied reports that he had already
decided to raise the VAT on July 1. He said that raising taxes was only one of
several ways being considered to raise funds for the Treasury.
are MKs who want to leave, they can,” Mofaz said.
“I don’t see them doing
that any time soon. We have a terrific team. Kadima is strong, and we are having
an impact now, which we didn’t before.”
Rebel Kadima MK Robert Tibayev
said he believes that in the end, it will be Mofaz himself who will leave the
party along with several of his allies and not the MKs currently considering
Labor faction head MK Isaac Herzog decided Thursday to
allow Tibayev to submit bills under Labor’s allotment, after Tibayev was
punished by his party for voting against the coalition on Wednesday. Each
faction in the Knesset is allowed to submit a certain amount of bills, depending
on the party’s size.
“We will talk to other opposition factions in order
to help every MK that refuses to surrender to the caprices and authority of the
destructive coalition,” Herzog said.
Tibayev was punished by Mofaz after
repeatedly breaking coalition discipline. The Kadima MK is forbidden from
submitting bills via his party for a month, and may not attend Knesset committee
On Wednesday, Tibayev voted in favor of a bill by MK Amir
Peretz (Labor) granting minimum wage to IDF soldiers.
Earlier this month,
Tibayev, as well as Kadima MKs Yoel Hasson and Nino Abesadze, voted for a bill
proposed by Herzog to criminalize discrimination against women.
change my opinions all at once, just because we suddenly joined the
This was a good bill that fit Kadima’s agenda,” Tibayev said
at the time.