Merger Between Jewish Home, Tekuma Approved
The central conference of the Habayit Hayehudi (Jewish Home) party convened on Monday evening and approved the agreement that merges the party with the National Union-Tekuma in a joint list for the 19th Knesset.
Bayit Yehudi chairman Naftali Bennett and National Union-Tekuma chairman Uri Ariel signed the merger agreement last Thursday.
The highlight of Monday evening’s conference was a speech by Bennett, in which he spoke about the big change in perception, both internally and externally, of the party.
"After so many years when we were on the fringes of Israeli politics, we are lifting our heads,” said Bennett. “A Jewish-Zionist spirit is sweeping the country. At every corner you can hear secular and religious people say: We are joining the Jewish Home. They ask us: What is the message? We should say at every corner: We love Israel, the Torah of Israel and the Israel Defense Forces.
"We appeal to all those who have a Jewish-Zionist spirit beating within them: If you are a soldier in the Givati Brigade who for months works hard for the people of Israel - you have a home. If you are a mother of children in southern Tel Aviv who fears for their safety because of the infiltrators - you have a home! If you are a hareidi person who wants to keep your religious values while at the same time being connected to the people - you have a home! If you are a young couple who wants to buy a house - you have a home! If you are a parent who wants to give your child a Jewish Zionist education - you have a home! The strengthening of religious Zionism and reaching out to all the people of Israel - that is our strategy.”
Bennett added, "The next government will be led by Binyamin Netanyahu. We will recommend him. The question is if it will be a Netanyahu-Lapid-Yechimovich-Livni coalition or a nationalist coalition with the Likud the Jewish Home…
"We are not in favor of a Palestinian state. We are in favor of the State of Israel and the people of Israel," said Bennett and called on Netanyahu to say that he does not favor two states for two peoples.
"I know it's hard, I know it. But over the last few weeks I met with ambassadors and international media outlets and talked about it. They do not understand our position – are we for are or against two states?”
Bennett added, "Our spokespeople in the world are explaining all the time why we need Judea and Samaria. I say we need Judea and Samaria because that is our land and has been for 3,800 years. That’s what must be said on CNN. Believe me, they understand it, believe me they will respect it.”
There will be nine members of the Bayit Yehudi and six members of Tekuma in the first 15 spots of the joint list. Bennett will be at the top spot and Ariel will be in the number two spot.
Bennett and Ariel will be followed by Nissan Slomiansky, Rabbi Eliyahu Ben Dahan, Ayelet Shaked, MK Uri Orbach, Zevulun Kalfa, Avi Wurtzman, Mordechai Yogev, Orit Strook, Yonatan Shetbun, Shuli Mualem, Rabbi Hillel Horwitz, Jeremy Gimpel, and Nachi Eyal, in that order.