Hadash MK Aida Touma-Sliman (Joint List) spoke on Radio 103FM on Sunday, March 8, and stressed that the entire parliamentary alliance to which she belongs will decide together on its political future. Her comments come amidst speculation that Blue & White leader MK Benny Gantz will seek support for the formation of a government from Joint List MKs.
“Blue & White has been putting out feelers, but without making a formal appeal; [like this] we will not discuss anything,” she stressed, adding, “We are one list. Anyone who wants to talk must talk to all 15 of us.” Touma-Sliman clarified that “what happened in the last [September] elections will not happen again. [Then] we fought the hardest of battles against Netanyahu, [and with this aim in mind] all the factions in the opposition [wound up] losing their power. Anyone who wants and dreams of becoming prime minister must recognize this; must understand and internalize it – and talk to us in public.”
In the past, “Gantz expressed support for US President Donald Trump’s ‘Deal of the Century,’” Touma-Sliman stressed. “Anyone who continues to support the Deal of the Century will not have our support.”
Joint List leader, MK Ayman Odeh (Hadash) told Haaretz on Sunday “I won’t let myself sit and wait for Gantz… We are 15-seats strong, and they should treat us accordingly.” During a meeting of Joint List MKs in Kafr Qasem, in central Israel, the participants agreed to decide whether to back Gantz only after a formal request is made, and in any case, only after negotiations over political and civil issues.
The Joint List has been reluctant to back Gantz for the premiership after he and his party repeatedly and categorically ruled out any cooperation with the alliance during the electoral campaign. Nevertheless, if the Joint List does decide to recommend Gantz to President Reuven Rivlin, they will insist that the former publicly present his stance on several political and civil issues that the alliance considers crucial before its lawmakers meet with the president for consultations.