With just days to go until the deadline for filing Knesset lists for the September election, United Right chairman Rafi Peretz has agreed to step aside, allowing New Right chairwoman Ayelet Shaked to lead the joint ticket.
The two leaders spoke over the phone Sunday afternoon, ahead of a planned meeting Sunday evening.
During the call, Peretz said that he accepted the New Right’s demand that Shaked, rather than himself, will lead a joint right-wing ticket.
“I’m happy to announce that I spoke with Ayelet Shaked just minutes ago,” Peretz tweeted, “We agreed that, out of a sense of national responsibility and concern for the formation of a right-wing government and the religious Zionist [sector], Ayelet will lead the United Right.”
“This evening we will meet to settle the details of a joint run, and then get it going.”
Earlier on Sunday, former Education Minister Naftali Bennett (New Right) said that the alliance between his party and the United Right would be a temporary one, and that the factions would likely split after the election.
“In elections, the only thing that matters is mandates. Seats are what later enable us to make [policy] based on our values.”
“Immediately after the elections, we will function in the Knesset as an independent faction.”
“A technical bloc is like when people get on the bus together, and when they get past the checkpoint, in other words the election, they then get off the bus and go their separate ways.”
Bennett also said that in addition to the United Right, he was interested in bringing in Zehut to the joint right-wing ticket.
“I’m going to a meeting this evening in order to help move [the negotiations] along, and afterwards, we will try to bring in the Zehut party into the alliance as well, so that we’ll have one large party.”