Yamina focuses on voter retention after attention-grabbing day

Yamina invested NIS 2.5 million in Election Day efforts, to be focused on making sure its supporters do not abandon them for Likud.

September 17, 2019 03:50
2 minute read.
Yamina focuses on voter retention after attention-grabbing day

Head of New Right party Ayelet Shaked . (photo credit: AVRAHAM SASSONI)

Yamina has invested NIS 2.5 million in Election Day efforts, to be focused on making sure its supporters do not abandon them for Likud.

The religious-right bloc chose to focus on the final days before the election more than the rest of the campaign, after learning the lessons of the last two elections. Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu went on a media blitz after the final polls were published on the Friday before Election Day in April, and Likud surged as the numbers of Yamina’s previous incarnations plummeted.

The campaign put out eight different videos on Monday, sending them to different demographics likely to support Yamina.

One featured Yamina chairwoman Ayelet Shaked pointing out that she is the only woman running at the head of a list in this election and the first-ever woman to lead a right-wing party on her own.

“We women can achieve whatever we dream of,” Shaked said. “Have courage and give me your vote – not for me or for yourself. Do it for your daughters or granddaughters, so they can hold their heads high and know they can do anything.”

Another video featured prominent religious-Zionist Rabbi Haim Druckman endorsing the party.

“Yamina is the only list of religious Zionism,” Druckman said. “Only [Yamina] will stand up for the whole Land of Israel and the Jewish identity of our country. It is especially important that they have many representatives in the Knesset, so they will be able to have a significant influence.”

Yamina plans to have 1,100 activists and volunteers contacting potential supporters on Election Day, using a computerized system to target voters and encourage them to go to the polls, including offering transportation.

West Bank settlers, a key group of Yamina supporters, tend to have a relatively high voting rate, a campaign insider explained, saying that “low turnout is more of a concern on the Left.” Yamina is more worried about votes that will move from them to Likud.

In addition, some of the polling stations in farther-flung settlements close at 8 p.m., two hours earlier than most, and the party plans to remind potential supporters in those areas to vote on time.
On Sunday, the party began its final-stretch efforts, with Shaked presenting a map which she claimed showed the plan for the West Bank in US President Donald Trump’s “Deal of the Century,” by which settlements and their access roads would become Israeli enclaves in a Palestinian state. The Trump administration and Netanyahu’s office both said the map did not reflect the plan.

Shaked then called a press conference in which she talked about the map, but also hinted that the animosity for her of Netanyahu’s wife, Sara, is getting in the way of the good of the country, because she tries to block her from enacting right-wing policies.

“The ideological Right deserves much more. I won’t let the grudge Netanyahu and those who surround him have against me hurt the country,” she said.

The Yamina source said that they considered Sunday’s press conference a success, as it dominated headlines and continued to be a topic of media conversation on Monday.

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