There are increasing indications that Prime Minister Naftali Bennett, who was considering leaving politics, has changed his mind and may run for the next Knesset, Channel 12 News reported on Monday evening.
According to the report, there was a change in Bennett’s conduct in the past two days. He seems to be taking action to evaluate his support among the Israeli electorate, spending hundreds of thousands of shekels on voter surveys, sponsored advertising online and on social media, and an organized demonstration of party supporters.
A new internal poll commissioned by Yamina shows that a majority of Bennett’s former voter base, the Dati Leumi public, will not vote for Yamina in another election.
If Bennett does join the election run, he will do so on a “national unity” platform, as he already hinted in interviews by saying that “a completely right-wing government is a disaster.”
He reiterated that view on Monday evening when he and the four remaining Yamina MKs met with a [small] group of Yamina activists on Monday evening.
“A Bibi-Ben-Gvir-Smotrich government is not good for Israel,” Bennett said. “We can’t allow it to happen, and I say this as a right-wing person.”
Bennett also reportedly told the activists that he is remaining in the government after Yair Lapid becomes prime minister and will serve as alternate prime minister and will focus on Iran. Prior reports said that he was considering leaving the government when Lapid entered his position.
A Walla News reporter even posted a leaked ad from Yamina indicating that Bennett is running in the next elections.
עוד איתות לכך שבנט שוקל ברצינות להוביל את ימינה בבחירות הקרובות. גרפיקה שהודלפה מתוך המפלגה pic.twitter.com/S0nMRgTp2H
— יקי אדמקר (@YakiAdamker) June 28, 2022
(YWN Israel Desk – Jerusalem)