Daily Israel Report

Likud, Jewish Home Merger Idea ‘Gathering Steam’

Likud and Jewish Home party may merge, thus making Likud larger than Kadima. The parties discussed the idea in a meeting between them Friday.
By Gil Ronen
First Publish: 2/13/2009, 1:40 PM

Israel News photo / Flash 90

Since election results were announced, the Likud has been considering a merger between it and the religious Jewish Home party. Such a merger would bring Likud, currently at 27 Knesset seats, to 30 seats versus Kadima’s 28.

The idea was reported by Channel 2 television news earlier this week and Arutz-7 has learned that it received new impetus following a meeting in Jerusalem Friday between Likud chairman Binyamin Netanyahu and the Jewish Home leadership -- party chairman Rabbi Prof. Daniel Hershkowitz, MK Zevulun Orlev and MK-elect Uri Orbach.

Likud sources, however, said that the idea is not currently being considered.

The Jewish Home leaders said before meeting the Likud leader that they intend to recommend to President Shimon Peres that Netanyahu form the next government, as they told their voters that they would do.

Netanyahu told them that he sees the Jewish Home as a partner in any government that he will establish.

Prof. Hershkowitz said after the meeting: “It was an excellent meeting. Honesty is part of our way, and therefore we will recommend Netanyahu. We will present our demands when the coalition negotiations begin.”