Netanyahu and other Likud lawmakers
Netanyahu and other Likud lawmakers Tomer Neuberg/Flash90

The Likud is preparing for early elections, party officials say, as Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu appears increasingly ready to break up the current coalition government.

According to a report by Ma’ariv which cited multiple Likud officials, the party is quietly readying itself for new elections, as the budget dispute between the Likud and Blue and White drags on, leading Netanyahu to seriously consider going to new elections.

The Likud party is pushing for the passage of a less comprehensive, one-year spending plan, while the Blue and White party is insisting on passing a two-year budget, in keeping with the coalition agreement. The current deadline for the state budget is August 15th.

The sources cited in the Ma’ariv report said that most Likud lawmakers oppose going to early elections, but are not willing to defy Netanyahu.

While MKs are not prepared to rebel against the premier, the officials said, tensions are rising within the party.

“The situation is far from being turbulent, but there is definitely discontent within the party. Everyone has suddenly started preparing [for elections]. Ministers, MKs, and activists are starting talk about conferences. Every day we hear about more initiatives by members of the central committee.”

“Members of the party list are renewing their ties with central committee members and are getting political advisers and lots of other things which hint at early elections.”