The Likud and the Labor party are holding talks over the possibility of Labor joining the coalition, MK Nachman Shai (Labor) revealed on Thursday.
In an update he posted to his website, Shai wrote, "I do not have any news regarding the coalition talks. They are continuing.”
He added, “Netanyahu's difficulties are prominent and clear. It’s hard to see which coalition will eventually be formed, but it seems right now that it will suffer from many splits and rifts.”
MK Shai was not optimistic that his party would ultimately join the government, adding that the Labor party is expected to have much work from the opposition “and we have begun to prepare for it.”
News that Labor is in talks with Likud are surprising, considering the unequivocal statements made in the past by party chairwoman MK Shelly Yechimovich that Labor would not join a Netanyahu-led government.
Yechimovich announced prior to the elections that she would not join Netanyahu’s government and reiterated her stance after the elections.
Last week Yechimovich met with Netanyahu, but while she agreed to the meeting, and even termed it “interesting,” she insisted afterward that there is no chance her party will join the government.
Several senior Labor party members, including Binyamin (Fouad) Ben-Eliezer and Yitchak Herzog, have reportedly been pressuring Yechimovich to change her mind.