The newly-formed Blue and White party will reach out to the Likud to form a unity government if the new left-wing bloc wins the April 9th elections, Yair Lapid said, adding that Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu would be unlikely to remain chief of the Likud if he lost the upcoming vote.
Speaking with Kan Monday morning, Lapid, the chairman of the Yesh Atid faction and member of the Blue and White union with the Israel Resilience Party, said the Blue and White party would not form a government which relied on the support of Arab factions, but would instead try to create a unity government including the Likud party.
Lapid predicted that if, as current polls suggest, Blue and White defeats the Likud, Prime Minister Netanyahu would step down as chairman of the Likud.
That, the former Finance Minister added, would pave the way for a grand coalition led by Blue and White and including the Likud.
“We won’t form a government with the Arab parties,” said Lapid, “we’ll turn to the Likud. It will be the post-Netanyahu Likud.”
“Overall, the Likud is an important national party with important people, and its Knesset slate isn’t bad, and we would definitely love to have it [in our coalition].”
Lapid also rejected claims that Benny Gantz and Yair Lapid would rely on Arab factions to form a “blocking majority” of 61 MKs to prevent Netanyahu from forming an alternative government.
“There is no such thing as a blocking majority. That’s something Bibi made up so he could say ‘they’re going to make a blocking majority with the Arabs.’”
The Blue and White alliance, which is currently leading the Likud with 33 to 36 seats in recent polls to the Likud’s 26 to 32, was formed last Thursday via the merger of Yesh Atid and the Israel Resilience Party.
If the party succeeds in forming the next government, Gantz and Lapid will rotate as Prime Minister, similar to the arrangement used by the Likud-Labor unity governments of the 1980s.