In a Monday afternoon 23 Kislev interview with Kol Berama Radio, Bayit Yehudi MK Yoni Chetboun confirmed reports that he is not going to run in his party’s primary election. Chetboun explained that he feels moving in a new direction with former Shas leader Eli Yishai is the step required at this time for he sees a union between chareidim and the dati leumi community a sign of achdus that can and must deliver strong message. Chetboun stated “the Bayit Yehudi party is a wonderful party with quality people”, but for him, it is not enough. He believes the hour demands achdus and joining forces with Yishai is the correct move at this time.
Chetboun admits he and Yishai have been discussing the idea.
He stressed the polls show he would land a good slot in the Bayit Yehudi elections but this is not what it is about for him. He emphasized repeatedly the need for an achdus party and he remains optimistic that together with Yishai, they can bring something new to the political arena. He added many rabbonim support his effort.
What about Uri Ariel?
You must ask him. Honestly, this is his personal businesses and for now I understand he is still negotiating with Naftali Bennett. Truly, please ask him.
How many seats do you believe such a party can receive? I am not speaking about the polls. What is your gut feeling?
I believe that we can receive ten or more seats. This is of course dependent on the makeup but I am telling you that to finally have achdus between chareidim and dati leumi communities can bring big numbers. It will depend on who we can bring on board.
(YWN – Israel Desk, Jerusalem)