Blue and White: Replace Knesset speaker, hold vote on Monday

Blue and White pushes to hold vote to replace Yuli Edelstein as Knesset Speaker. Likud: Request is 'embarrassment,' and petty politics.

Tags: Coronavirus
Hezki Baruch ,

Yuli Edelstein
Yuli Edelstein
Yonatan Sindel/Flash90

Blue and White MK Avi Nissenkorn on Friday sent a letter to Knesset Speaker Yuli Edelstein (Likud) requesting that a vote be held on Monday to elect a new Knesset speaker for the 23rd Knesset.

The Blue and White party is working to remove Edelstein from his position, and appoint MK Meir Cohen (Blue and White) in his stead.

"In the name of the Blue and White party, I hereby request that on Monday, March 16, the Knesset schedule include voting on the Speaker of the 23rd Knesset," Nissenkorn wrote in his letter.

The Likud party responded: "Blue and White's message is an embarrassment, and it is published at the height of an emergency discussion which is being led by Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu on the issue of coronavirus. The State of Israel is in a national state of emergency, the greatest since its founding."

"Less than 24 hours [have passed] since Prime Minister Netanyahu called for the formation of a national emergency government to handle the coronavirus, and Blue and White still don't understand the meaning of the crisis, and continue to busy themselves with petty politics.

"They get a zero for leadership and judgement. The Prime Minister calls - from the midst of the discussion - on Benny Gantz to recover his senses and immediately join a national unity government."

On Thursday evening, Netanyahu spoke with Blue and White Chairman MK Benny Gantz, inviting him to an immediate meeting with the goal of immediately establishing a national emergency government. He emphasized that those who support terror would not be welcome to be part of the decision-making teams.

In response, Gantz suggested to Netanyahu that a meeting between the negotiating teams be held to examine the establishment of a broad national emergency government to combat the spread of the coronavirus.

Earlier the same evening, Gantz had called for the formation of an emergency government including the Joint Arab List.

Culture and Sport Minister Miri Regev (Likud) called on the Blue and White chairman to enter the government without insisting that the Joint Arab List be part of it as well.

"Gantz, show national leadership and responsibility and enter a national emergency government, without the supporters of terrorism, because that is the order of the hour," Regev said. “Leadership is tested precisely at such times, it is a real war for the well-being and health of Israeli citizens. Be on the right side of history, without shticks and games. An entire nation longs for a stable government that will be prepared for the challenges ahead," she added.