livni 88 .
(photo credit: Ariel Jerozolimski)
Associates of Kadima leader Tzipi Livni on Friday dismissed as a failure a rally held by her rival Shaul Mofaz in which he called for a prompt leadership race.
According to Army Radio, the associates said that the rally held on Thursday night in Kiryat Malachi under the banner "Primaries in 2010 - Kadima members vote for party unity," was a failure since only four "junior" Kadima MKs attended, and even they did not publicly state whether they would actually back Mofaz in a leadership primary.
Nevertheless, Mofaz's associates insisted that the event was a success and that the 250 activists who attended had pledged their support for him and in a prompt party primary.
During the rally, Mofaz said that the party lacked leadership.
"There is a crack in the movement that cannot be swept under the carpet, and it must be exposed," he said.
The Kadima No. 2 went on to say that Livni had failed in not forming a government and subsequently in not joining Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu's coalition.
"You will soon be called upon to vote, be prepared and tell people," he told the activists. "For the sake of the future of the State of Israel, the future of Kadima and the future of every one of us."
The four MKs who attended the rally were Eli Aflalo, Otniel Schneller, Robert Tibayev and Arieh Bibi.
Aflalo said he would remain in Kadima and do all he could to change the party's leadership, while Schneller called on both Mofaz and Livni to compromise on a primary date "in order to unite the party."
On Thursday, the Kadima steering committee, led by MK Tzahi Hanegbi, will convene to discuss, among other issues, a party primary.
Hangebi is said to want the vote a year before the next general election, Mofaz wants it held immediately, while Livni's associates have expressed confidence that she can defeat her rival at any given moment.