Jewish Home, National Union renew talks for joint run

After Likud rejects technical bloc with Jewish Home, religious Zionist factions return to negotiating table, with just 10 days to deadline.

Arutz Sheva Staff ,

Rabbi Rafi Peretz (center)
Rabbi Rafi Peretz (center)

The Jewish Home and National Union factions have resumed negotiations for a joint ticket in this year’s election, following a breakdown in talks over the weekend.

In a statement Monday morning, the National Union announced that talks with the Jewish Home had been renewed.

“A short time ago, people close to Rabbi Rafi Peretz reached out to us and asked for a meeting, with no pre-conditions. After this, talks between the two parties were resumed, on the basis of joint leadership and equal partnership.”

“The National Union’s negotiating team will continue to meet with all relevant officials for a full union of religious Zionism and the right-wing.”

The two factions, which ran together in 2013 and 2015, have struggled to come to an agreement for a third joint run, following the departure of former party chief Naftali Bennett.

Last week, former IDF chief rabbi Rafael ‘Rafi’ Peretz was tapped by the Jewish Home to lead the party.

Since then, however, talks with the National Union failed to yield an agreement for a joint run, leading to a total breakdown of talks over the weekend.

While the joint Jewish Home-National Union ticket won eight seats in 2015, Bennett’s departure and formation of the New Right has left the Jewish Home polling at between three to six seats – hovering around the 3.25% electoral threshold.

A split between the Jewish Home and National Union would likely guarantee both factions fail to enter the 21st Knesset.

Following the breakdown in talks with the National Union, Peretz turned to the Likud, eyeing a possible technical bloc with the ruling party.

The Likud later turned down the offer, however, leading prominent national-religious rabbis to call an emergency meeting, slated for Monday afternoon.

In addition to a joint run with the National Union, some, including Rabbi Zalman Melamed, a senior rabbi in the national-religious movement, have urged the Jewish Home to form a technical bloc with the Otzma Yehudit party, a right-wing faction led by former Kach activists Baruch Marzel and Michael Ben-Ari, and with the Yahad party.