Anticipating early vote, Kahlon steps up political activity

Finance Minister Moshe Kahlon affixes a mezuza at Kulanu party's new Tel Aviv headquarters, help of Or Yehuda chief rabbi Tzion Cohen. (photo credit: ELAD MALKA)
Finance Minister Moshe Kahlon affixes a mezuza at Kulanu party's new Tel Aviv headquarters, help of Or Yehuda chief rabbi Tzion Cohen.
(photo credit: ELAD MALKA)
Finance Minister Moshe Kahlon surprisingly escalated his political activity over the past week, even though early elections have not been initiated.
At a ceremony Thursday evening opening his Kulanu party’s new headquarters in Tel Aviv, he promised his party would be “the surprise of the next elections,” which he said would take place in February or March.
In an Army Radio interview Thursday, Kahlon promised that Kulanu would run on its own. He denied reports that he has talked to multiple politicians about running together with Likud, in order to put himself in position to run for prime minister after Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu leaves office.
Kulanu reserved billboards all over the country last week with the slogan “Kahlon – Your security.” He explained that the billboards were intended to emphasize that Israel’s security situation depends on a strong economy.
Kahlon said he did not intend to disrespect Defense Minister Avigdor Liberman or to try to take away votes from his Yisrael Beytenu party.
“Security is not only ammunition and army,” he said. “There is also economic security and socioeconomic security.”
He promised more slogans ahead of the next election that will attract attention.

Likud minister Tzachi Hanegbi
said at a cultural event in Tzur Hadassah that he expects the prime minister to remain in office for another decade and the next election to be held on time in November 2019.
“The Netanyahu era will end in 10 or 11 years,” he said, adding that he was the most fit candidate to replace him.