Moshe Kahlon votes at a ballot box in his native Givat Olga.
(photo credit: FACEBOOK)
Moshe Kahlon, the Likud defector who led his newly established Kulanu Party to 10 seats in parliament, is preparing a series of demands in what promises to be difficult coalition talks with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.
According to Israeli television, Kahlon will demand that Netanyahu also invite his rival and erstwhile finance minister Yair Lapid into the government.
In addition, Kahlon, who is said to have his eye on the job of finance minister, wants his party to assume control of the powerful Knesset Finance Committee so that he would have enough clout to implement a series of reforms aimed at lowering the cost of living in Israel.
The former communications minister's signature achievement – introducing more competition into Israel's highly concentrated cellular phone market – catapulted him to political stardom.
Now, Kahlon wants Netanyahu to commit to a timetable in which specific reforms that he is planning for the banking sectors as well as the housing sector will go into effect.
On his Facebook page on Friday, Kahlon authored a post in which he threatened to keep his party in the opposition unless his demands were met.
"Kulanu is a party that has a clear path," he wrote. "The election results are clear, but our path was and remains the essence. Our intention is to extract from these coalition talks exactly what we promised the public. We didn't come here just to talk and to occupy a post."
"We came to foment change, we came to solve problems, we came to remedy Israeli society," Kahlon wrote. "Nobody has a birthright to be in the government. None of us have to be there."