The Knesset discussed a series of no-confidence proposals directed against Benjamin Netanyahu's government Monday by the Opposition amidst already tepid protests over Israel's fiscal policies.
Knesset Debates No Confidence Motions
Opposition discussed no confidence motions as social protest groups begin bickering. PM: "Jabotinsky believed in free market".
Gabe Kahn., 01/08/11 22:06
MKs Livni (Kadima) and Peretz (Labor), 25.1.1
Israel news photo: Flash 90
MK Amir Peretz, failed former Labor party chairman and Defense Minister currently running to retake his party's helm, slammed Netanyahu.
"Mr. Prime Minister," Peretz said, sounding like the Histadrut Labor Union head he was before running for the Knesset. "You created the tycoons and until a few months ago you took pride in them. It wasn't so long ago that you praised them and said they were indispensible."
Peretz added: "The people are saying enough of the social depravity policy, we want social justice."
MK Ilan Ghilon (Meretz) said, "Something is happening here that is more important than the government, more important than parties, and indeed my own party. The Israeli public is opening its eyes and saying 'enough is enough.'"
Polls results monday indicate, while Israelis are demanding changes to government fiscal and housing policies, they are not interested in a change in government and believe Netanyahu is best suited to tackling the troubles they face.
Earlier on Monday, a heated debate developed in the Likud faction meeting. Deputy Minister Ayoob Kara claimed that the extent of the protest had been inflated.
"The media said there were 150,000 people. I only saw a few here and there," Kara said.
Also Monday, the Knesset plenum held a special meeting marking 71 years since the death of Ze'ev Jabotinsky, founder of the Revisionist movement.
"Jabotinsky believed not only that competition was financially desirable but that it was just," Netanyahu said. "There is no need and no sense in limiting the individual's competitiveness. This almost always comes at the expense of the citizen."
Netanyahu went on to defend his fiscal policies during a Likud leadership meeting.