Communications Minister Yoaz Hendel and MK Zvi Hauser, who make up the Derech Eretz party in the Knesset, are preparing for possible elections and are considering joining the Yamina party led by Naftali Bennett.
Kan 11 News on Thursday published recordings of the two in a conversation with activists. In them, Hauser is heard saying, “I see conduct and developments in Yamina which are positive in our direction. This is a necessary condition but not enough, we will have to assess the situation at the right time."
Hendel said in the recordings, "There are many things on which I agree with Naftali and many things on which I do not agree with [Bezalel] Smotrich. We are not in agreement with the Nationalist Haredim on matters of religion and state. The less the state intervenes in the religious life of its residents, the better.”
“I am in favor of a civil union that will be a way to establish a relationship without going through the rabbinate. Certainly not to preserve the rabbinate's monopoly on Jewish life in Israel,” he added.
Smotrich responded to the recordings and told Reshet Bet radio, "They are good guys, but I have no idea who wants them with us, they do not add even one voter to us, they are in great distress because they do not pass the electoral threshold in any scenario."
"To their credit, they insisted on not cooperating with the Joint List, but still ran with Blue and White and Yair Lapid and Benny Gantz, put themselves in the place that is farthest from me on the ideological level because of their hatred for Netanyahu, they went for an opportunism without an identity because of their personal issues," Smotrich charged.