Last week saw parties begin preparations for the next election, like in the second round of elections, the race is expected to start off slowly and pick up the pace in the last few weeks. Currently, parties are working on their lists and deciding on any changes. Parties select their lists differently depending on their constitutions.
The Likud Central Committee passed a resolution to not hold primaries for the party list for this election however the party court has ruled that primaries must be held, MK’s are appealing this ruling.
Bayit Yehudi has agreed to run on a joint list with Otzma Yehudit and they have left space for Tekuma to join the list. Tekuma is currently headed by Betzael Smotrich and has been running with Bayit Yehudi however there are currently some tensions between Smotrich and Bayit Yehudi leader Rav Rafii Peretz. The friction revolves around Smotrich lobbying for Tekuma and Bayit Yehudi to become one party with the leader selected by a primary.
Stav Shaffir who currently heads the Green movement is still hoping for all the left-wing parties to run on one list however she is preparing to run independently from the Democratic Union if necessary.
Labor-Gesher has agreed to run together again with the same list pending approval from party institutions.
Yisrael Beiteinu reportedly offered Ayelet Shaked a senior position on their list. Shaked rejected the offer and has announced that she will be staying with Hayamin Hechdash (New Right). Shaked will be number 2 on the list while remaining a co-chair of the party.
Ahead of this week’s Primary Gidon Sa’ar received a key endorsement from MK’s Chaim Katz and Sharren Haskell. Almost all the other Likud MK’s have endorsed Netanyahu, notably, Minister Gilad Erdan and Speaker Yuli Edelstein have not endorsed either candidate.
Former Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni has denied reports that she is interested in returning to politics and running with Blue and White.
Netanyahu is expected to appoint Likud MK’s Tzipi Hotovelly and Nir Barkat as Diaspora and Agriculture Ministers respectively while Shas leader Aryeh Deri will receive the welfare portfolio and UTJ’s Yaakov Litzman will once again serve as Health Minister. Netanyahu is expected to make the appointments after this week’s Likud leadership primary.
Central Elections Committee director-general Orly Ades revealed a new rule requiring heads of polling stations to be 21 years old and party representatives at polling stations to be at least 17.
New Central Elections Committee chairman Neal Hendel joked that since his one-year-old granddaughter was born, there have been three elections, so if she lived until age 120, she will see 360 elections.