Kadima members
Kadima members Israel news photo: Flash 90

The Kadima faction decided Sunday to cancel the party's planned primaries and instead appoint a committee to select its list for the next Knesset.

Party chairman MK Shaul Mofaz favored this decision.

Kadima, which is currently the Knesset's largest faction with 28 seats, is expected to lose three quarters of its power in the next election. Polls currently give it only about 7 seats. The decision to cancel the primaries apprenty stems from the party leaders' desire to appoint popular figures to the party list, to enable its survival.

MK Danny Danon (Likud) was quick to denounce the decision. "The Kadima party is a political carcass with no values, which will soon disappear from the pages of Israel's history," he said.

"A party that places all of its hopes on a man who has been found guilty of criminal acts and is about to stand trial again for corruption is a party that has lost its place in Israeli politics," said Danon, in a reference to former prime minister Ehud Olmert, who some in Kadima hope will take the reins.

Danon predicted that Kadima would not even be able to pass the minimum threshold for entering the 19th Knesset.

Kadima was created by Ariel Sharon with the express purpose of enabling the unilateral Israeli pullout from Gaza and northern Samaria in 2005, and the destruction of Jewish communities in those regions.