Kadima MKs say Ramon trying to split party

Ramon accused of trying to instigate “a second political big bang”; Omri Sharon: Joining coalition was mistake.

Haim Ramon 390 (photo credit: Gil Cohen Magen / Reuters)
Haim Ramon 390
(photo credit: Gil Cohen Magen / Reuters)
Recently fired Kadima council chairman Haim Ramon is encouraging rebellious Knesset members in Kadima to break off from the party, MKs in the party’s faction said on Thursday.
The MKs added that Ramon, who helped to found Kadima, said he wanted to instigate what he called “a second political big bang.” They said Ramon, who supported Tzipi Livni in the Kadima leadership election on March 27, is in touch with her and she is aware of his efforts.
A spokesman for Livni said that she is not involved in any attempts to split.
A mini-rebellion in the Kadima faction continued to gain steam on Thursday.
Five Kadima MKs have said they want to break off from the party, but legally they need seven to split.
The rebels expressed confidence that not only would they eventually draft two more MKs, they would obtain the nine MKs needed to be the largest opposition faction and to replace Labor chairwoman Shelly Yacimovich as opposition leader.
Former MK Omri Sharon, the son of Kadima’s founder, former prime minister Ariel Sharon, criticized new Kadima chairman Shaul Mofaz on Thursday for bringing the party into Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu’s government.
Sharon said he would continue to support the party, unlike Ramon, who quit Kadima on Wednesday.
But he added that going to early elections would be better for the party.
“I would prefer replacing the bad government we have today,” Sharon said in closed conversations.
Yisrael Maimon, who was Ariel Sharon’s cabinet secretary, also criticized the move, saying that Kadima needs to differentiate itself from the Likud.