'It's Liberman's fault we're in this mess'

MK Moshe Gafni criticizes Shaked for suggesting the haredim should compromise on issues of religion and state.

Ben Shaul ,

Moshe Gafni
Moshe Gafni
Flash 90

MK Moshe Gafni (United Torah Judaism), chairman of the Knesset Finance Committee, on Sunday criticized the remarks made by New Right chairwoman Ayelet Shaked, who said that the haredim should compromise on issues of religion and state.

"I am willing to compromise on roles, not on the most sensitive issues. Why should Shaked not compromise in order to bring Meretz to the coalition? After all, there is a need for unity," Gafni said in an interview with Army Radio.

Discussing the tense political situation and the attempts to form a government, Gafni warned, "Third elections would mean an economic disaster. The most prominent example is the health system which is in a state of economic collapse. The state will not be able to recover from this, it would be a disaster."

Gafni blasted the media which, he claimed, handles Yisrael Beytenu chairman Avigdor Liberman with kid gloves. "Liberman has for an entire year gone neither to the left nor to the right. He sits on the fence and in the meantime the state is disabled. It is a pity that the media is afraid to talk about this man named Liberman because we’re in this mess because of him. I would become the darling of the media if I went with the left."

MK Uri Maklev (United Torah Judaism) also criticized Shaked's remarks on Sunday, saying, "Most political elements fear an election because they are afraid for themselves, this statement that asks the haredi parties to become flexible comes from fear of new elections, this call is not collegial and incorrect, why are they demanding of us what they do not demand of themselves? Will they meet the Democratic Union’s demands?”

"Are the demands of the haredi parties not applicable for the national religious public too? We insist on our demands which are the foundations of the Jewish people. Things that are the basis and principles of the Jewish people, and to come and say that one can be flexible on this is wrong and improper, and serves no purpose other than to divert the discussion in the direction of the haredi public. If we stand together in a coherent manner, we will all benefit from this," he added.

The comments came hours after Shaked explained on Sunday morning, "There are two reasonable options for forming a government. 1. A unity government, Netanyahu and Gantz will have to agree amongst themselves who will serve as Prime Minister first. 2. Liberman will enter the right-wing bloc and bring great achievements to his public and the haredim will have to compromise."