Amir Peretz: Center-left bloc needs 61 mandates to avoid fourth election

Labor seems to be at a crossroads at the moment, with rumors that Orly Levy-Abekasis may leave the union for Blue and White and that the party my unite with Meretz to create a larger left-wing bloc.

Amir Peretz sports a new look – without his trademark moustache (photo credit: NIR ELIAS / REUTERS)
Amir Peretz sports a new look – without his trademark moustache
(photo credit: NIR ELIAS / REUTERS)
Labor’s mission is for the center-left bloc to win 61 seats without Yisrael Beytenu, party leader Amir Peretz said at a culture event in Ramat Hasharon on Saturday.
If they don’t, the country may be facing a fourth election, he said.
“Any government that is formed will need to have a heart transplant,” he said, criticizing the previous government’s policies, which he said have led to an enormous amount of pressure within hospitals and unreasonable waiting times for treatment. “Look at the emergency rooms.”
Labor is at a crossroads as rumors have been flying that Blue and White may offer a senior position to Gesher leader Orly Levy-Abecassis  if she breaks off from Labor, KAN reported on Friday.
Blue and White is also demanding that Labor and Meretz unite to create a strong left-wing bloc to support Benny Gantz’s party, the report said.
Meanwhile, former Labor and current Democratic Union MK Stav Shaffir may reportedly break off from the party to start an independent ecologically motivated Green Party on the Left.
“Today, to the left of Blue and White, there is only room for one party,” said Blue and White MK Asaf Zamir during a culture event in Hadera on Saturday. “If the two do not unite, they are at risk of not passing the electoral threshold.”
Labor MK Itzik Shmuli is expected to meet with Meretz MK and former party head Tamar Zandberg this coming week to discuss these possible changes.