Coalition deal between Likud and Blue and White ‘imminent’

Negotiations have been stuck over Netanyahu’s demands for legislation to preserve him in office.

Likud leader Benjamin Netanyahu and Blue and White leader Benny Gantz  (photo credit: REUTERS)
Likud leader Benjamin Netanyahu and Blue and White leader Benny Gantz
(photo credit: REUTERS)
Blue and White sources have stated that a coalition deal with the Likud is now imminent and could be settled late Saturday night.

The Jerusalem Pos
t understands that the Likud and Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu have backed down on demands for legislation to circumvent any High Court ruling preventing him from serving as prime minister or deputy prime minister during the period of the unity government.
And Channel 12 News reported that Blue and White leader Benny Gantz told associates that a significant breakthrough had recently been made in the coalition negotiations and that an agreement could be signed in the next 24 hours.
This report comes following strong words the Blue and White leader made in a Facebook post on Friday afternoon in which he accused Netanyahu of refusing to compromise in coalition negotiations because he was seeking fourth elections.
Negotiations have been stuck over Netanyahu’s demands for legislation to preserve him in office, be it as prime minister or deputy prime minister, should the High Court of Justice rule he must resign due to the criminal indictments against him and his pending trial.
Blue and White has so far refused to accept such demands, leading to the current stalemate.
On Saturday night, Blue and White MK Hili Tropper repeated the party’s threats that it would advance legislation on Monday to block Netanyahu from serving as prime minister if a deal was not reached by then during an interview on Channel 12’s Meet the Press program.
“If at the end of the day this ends without a government, then we will have had deceit and a lack of responsibility,” Tropper said in the interview which was recorded Friday night.
He added, however, that “the door is not yet closed.”
Tropper added that the status of the legal system was at the heart of the dispute between Blue and White and the Likud, and that his party would not concede its stance on this issue.
“We will not agree to a government that harms the rule of law… We will not allow harm to come to the courts. A High Court override clause is a redline.”
Netanyahu has sought guarantees of support from Blue and White for various legislative instruments in a coalition deal that would circumvent a High Court decision preventing him from serving as prime minister in the period he is supposed to be prime minister in a rotation deal with Gantz, or as deputy prime minister in the second period of the agreement when Gantz serves as prime minister.
Tropper said that most other matters had been agreed upon but said that “Benjamin Netanyahu refuses to sign; every time [he] finds something else when most of these issues relate to his personal interests.”
On Friday, Gantz wrote on Facebook: “Whoever wants fourth elections, should say [so]. Those who want to spend billions of shekels instead of passing them on to the health care system, the self-employed and the unemployed, those left destitute because of the coronavirus crisis, should come forward.”


Tags coalition