Stav Shaffir pushing to unite Left ahead of possible election
Shaffir suggested that the merged party be called the Israeli Democratic Party
By GIL HOFFMAN
The Labor Party and the parties that make up the Democratic Union must start taking steps to unite in case another election is initiated, Democratic Union MK and former Labor leadership candidate Stav Shaffir told her faction on Monday.Shaffir told the faction that uniting the Left was the only way to ensure that the focus of the next election will be on the key issues the two parties care about, and not only on the fate of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.“I am not sure that there will be an election,” Shaffir wrote on Twitter. “But if there will be, we need the Left to unite. We need unity to survive, for ideology and to not lose votes, which would help Bibi get 61 mandates.”Shaffir suggested in her tweet that the merged party be called the Israeli Democratic Party, and that the ballot take part of Meretz’s name and the letters from Labor’s voting slips to make the Hebrew word for land.Meretz leader Nitzan Horowitz said it was premature to discuss the idea, but that he has always been in favor of uniting the Left. He met last week with Labor-Gesher leader Amir Peretz.Peretz told the Labor-Gesher faction that Labor and Gesher would run independently, but that he was willing to take whatever steps would ensure the most seats possible for his political bloc.A Labor-Gesher MK said the efforts to unite Labor and Meretz have been going on for many years, and that the only reason why Shaffir was taking credit for promoting the idea now was that she was worried about her own political future after leaving Labor and not succeeding in bringing enough votes to expand Meretz.