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July 10, 2022 8:01 am
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Israel’s New Hope and Blue and White Preparing to Merge: Report

avatar by i24 News

Then Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Benny Gantz, centrist Blue and White leader, during a swearing in ceremony  in Jerusalem, May 17, 2020. Photo: Amos Ben Gershon/Knesset Spokesperson’s Office/Handout via REUTERS.

i24 News – Israel’s center Blue and White party and the center-right New Hope party are preparing to run together in the next round of elections, according to Channel 12.

Neither party has confirmed the report, and both parties refused to respond to The Jerusalem Post’s query.

According to the report, Defense Minister Benny Gantz — current leader of Blue and White — would sit at the head of the list and Justice Minister Gideon Sa’ar, leading New Hope, would be in second place.

Education Minister Yifat Shasha-Bitton would be fifth on the list and Construction and Housing Minister Zeev Elkin would be seventh. Communications Minister Yaoz Hendel would not be a part of the slate.

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If former military chief of staff Gadi Eisenkot, who was considering running with either Yesh Atid or Blue and White, joins the list, he would be placed second or third.

In the current makeup of Israel’s Knesset, Blue and White has eight seats, and New Hope has six.

According to a Channel 12 poll conducted ten days ago, the joint party would receive 15 seats, the third-largest after the right-wing Likud and the centrist Yesh Atid. However, recent polls show that Sa’ar’s party by itself either gets the minimum amount of seats possible or does not make the threshold to enter the Knesset.

New Hope will reportedly receive about one-third of the joint party’s seats if the merger passes, versus two-thirds for Blue and White.

Elections are scheduled to take place November 1 and the deadline for parties to submit their slate of candidates to the Central Elections Committee is August 15.

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