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March 30, 2021 10:14 am

Sa’ar Could Back Government Led by Lapid and Bennett in Rotation: Report

avatar by i24 News

Gideon Sa’ar. Photo: Reuters / Francois Lenoir.

i24 News – Gideon Sa’ar, head of the New Hope party, is open to backing a government with Yesh Atid chief Yair Lapid and Yamina head Naftali Bennett rotating as prime minister, public broadcaster Kan reported on Monday.

The report cited sources close to Sa’ar as saying that the former rival of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in the Likud ranks is unlikely to team up with Lapid without Bennett.

Without the Yamina chief onboard, Israel would be in for nothing but a “left-wing government,” the sources told the outlet.

Ahead of the March 23 election, Sa’ar rejected the idea of Lapid taking over the PM’s office, but later on did not rule out in a government led by Lapid.

Bennett, for his part, has ruled out sitting with Lapid whether he is the sole prime minister or leads in a rotation with any other lawmaker.

The report comes as the parties are exploring various possibilities for a coalition, all of them seemingly murky in the wake of the March 23 vote.

With his traditional religious-right allies and the Religious Zionism party led by Bezalel Smotrich, who said on Tuesday he would recommend Netanyahu, the PM sits at 52 mandates, not enough for a 61-vote majority with support from Yamina.

An alliance with the Ra’am party, a breakaway faction of the predominantly Arab Joint List, could push the PM into the lead, but is rejected by his right-wing allies; at the same time, an anti-Netanyahu bloc coalition may also have to rely on both right-wing and Arab support.

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