Speaking at a party meeting on Monday, Foreign Minister and Yesh Atid leader Yair Lapid assured his fellow party members that the state budget, which must be passed within the next few weeks if the government is to survive, will pass.
“I want to cut through all the chaff right now and get down to the main issue,” Lapid said. “The budget is going to pass. The coalition is functioning. Most of the sticking points that remain are due to our insistence on dealing with problems that were pushed to the back burner over the last ten years,” he added.
“Just take a look at what happened yesterday in the Knesset,” Lapid continued. “We’re dealing with Arab society. We’re dealing with the climate crisis. We’re dealing with Holocaust survivors, with youth movements, with the LGBT community, with people with disabilities. We’re dealing with everything that was left undone for years.
“And when you deal with stuff, that’s when arguments start,” he said. “All kinds of competing interests surface, and the only way to prevent arguments is not to do anything at all. There’s a price to be paid for taking action, but we’re prepared to pay that price.”
According to Lapid, “This is not a government that is ten percent Yamina or ten percent left-wing. It’s a government that is one hundred percent for the benefit of Israeli citizens, a patriotic government, and true patriots don’t run away from problems – they deal with them.
“In the next four years, we are going to argue and take action. We’re going to pass budgets, reduce the price of food, continue to take a world lead in the battle against coronavirus – and we’ll also argue, about the settlements, about the Palestinians, and about security and the economy.
“Making changes is always a complicated process and there will always be those who try to stop us and turn the clock back. But we are not turning back. The State of Israel is advancing to a better place.”
During the course of his speech, Lapid referred to Sunday’s memorial service marking 31 years since the assassination of Rabbi Meir Kahane, calling all those who participated the “ideological descendants of Yigal Amir,” who was convicted of murdering Yitzhak Rabin.
“Itamar Ben Gvir isn’t a Religious-Zionist – he’s an extremist,” Lapid said.