'Our economy is on the verge of collapse - and they make the most wasteful gov't ever'

Yesh Atid chairman slams Netanyahu-Gantz coalition deal, calling planned unity gov't "the largest and most wasteful in history."

Tags: Yair Lapid
Arutz Sheva Staff ,

Yair Lapid
Yair Lapid
צילום: אלעד גוטמן

Yesh Atid chairman and former Finance Minister Yair Lapid excoriated the coalition agreement between Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu and Blue and White party chief Benny Gantz for the establishment of a unity government, contrasting the economic hardships faced by many Israelis with what he dubbed the ‘largest, most wasteful government’ in history.

“There is one major problem with the government being formed now – it’s not the government anyone needs,” Lapid said in a statement Monday afternoon, lambasting the deal cut by Netanyahu and Gantz for a three-year unity government which is set to include a record 36 ministers, along with 16 deputy ministers.

“This government is the reason no-one believes politicians anymore. They are shamelessly taking advantage of a national crisis to create jobs for themselves. No-one needs a government of 36 ministers and 16 deputy ministers. 52 ministerial offices. Drivers, offices, budgets, jobs for everyone. A huge budget and incredible waste. Hundreds of millions wasted at the time when the economy is on the verge of collapse.”

Lapid spoke out as the Supreme Court held a hearing Monday in response to multiple petitions calling for the cancellation of the coalition deal. A day earlier, the court deliberated on petitions calling for Netanyahu to be barred from forming a new government, citing his indictments for bribery, fraud, and breach of trust.

“This crisis already anyway being managed. There are already too many hands on the wheel. No ministry knows what it is responsible for. Their solution – to create more ministries and more jobs. We’ve been sat in the Knesset for days, going over their coalition deal line by line. I call on every citizen in Israel: read the agreement. They are counting on you not reading it. Don’t give them that pleasure. Read every word.”

MK Lapid also took the Netanyhau-Gantz deal to task for not addressing the ongoing coronavirus, or the effect of the nationwide shutdown on small businesses.

The deal “doesn’t contain anything about Corona. It doesn’t contain anything about small businesses. It doesn’t contain anything about the unemployed. It’s all rotation and jobs and how many ministers each party gets. Whatever it takes for Netanyahu to stay as Prime Minister with three indictments. Instead of Israel before everything, its jobs before everything.”

“Israel deserves more. Israel is better than this. The people who live here deserve a government which hasn’t abandoned all its values, which believes in integrity and decency. That will work hard for them. That our children can look at and be proud of. Seeing as that government doesn’t exist, we’ll be an opposition like that. We’ll be the opposition of small businesses, of young parents, of all those hurt by the Corona crisis.”

“I’ll say this now - When it comes to the fight against the Corona, we will support anything good that the government does. We’ll vote in favor. We’ll enlist the Knesset. We won’t think about the political calculation.”

“This crisis needs to be managed not by a bloated government but by a small and strong team, with the ability and authority to take decisions. What we need is a plan with a clear timetable of when the economy will re-open. We proposed a plan. It includes unemployment benefits for the self-employed, with a clear compensation package and with a plan to get the unemployed back to work. It’s a good plan and it needs to be implemented.”

“The government doesn’t have a plan. Just a series of confused instructions thrown at us on TV. No-one takes responsibility. Instead of a plan, they’re creating a bureaucratic monster. The largest, most wasteful government in the history of the country. Who needs that?”