I would like to sum up the voting to disperse the country's 24th Knesset. But I am actually summing up the 24th Knesset itself. True, there's still a process to go through but once all the committee discussions and votes are over, we will go our separate ways in peace. We had our disagreements, some of them friendly and some angry, but I think that most of us will be leaving with a sense that we came here to bring about benefit for the Israeli people.
Until three weeks ago I was part of the coalition. I was a part of a very complex, diverse coalition for a year. It was a year of unending disputes and battles, many of which did nothing to add to our dignity or the dignity of the Knesset, the symbol of renewed Israeli sovereignty.
I entered this coalition not as my first preference, but simply because there was no other option of forming a government. I made absolutely sure of that, and I also made sure that the coalition agreements protected my values and protected Israel as a Jewish and democratic state.
But this experiment has failed. Throughout the year, people asked me where my red lines were -- at what point would I no longer be able to be part of the coalition? And I always replied: When my red lines are reached, you'll see it. And I saw it. For me, the red line was cooperation and reliance on the Joint List. There are people who won't like hearing this, but from my perspective, anyone who does not recognize Israel as a Jewish state, that Jews are part of the State of Israel -- anyone whose ambition is to see no Jews in the Land of Israel -- that person is not someone we should cooperate with and he should not be in the Knesset.
But I'm not the one who decides who can be elected to the Knesset. All the same, I can decide who I want to cooperate with, and so, my red line was reached. But it was reached after we attained significant achievements as a government, achievements which should be recognized.
I was filled with pride to see, for the first time, a prime minister from the Religious-Zionist community, someone who wears a kippa. I have been at his side for a decade and have seen him do many good things for the Israeli people.
We passed a budget after it was stalled for years. People don't always appreciate the importance of passing a budget and ensuring the orderly running of the various government ministries.
I was filled with pride at the Flag Dance that proceeded according to the outline. At our opposition to the Iran nuclear deal. At the authorizations of thousands of residential units in Judea and Samaria. At the progress made in connecting young settlements to the national electric grid, a process that we have yet to complete. I am full of pride in our continued improved relations with foreign countries, in the fiber-optic connections we have expanded all over the country, including in Judea and Samaria and the Galilee, as well as the Negev and the center of the country. I am proud of the exceptional level of cooperation we attained between secular and religious, between Left and Right - of how we broke down barriers and brought about achievements for populations that had been neglected. We succeeded in delivering for them.
Aside from our many victories we also had not a few failures. This was a difficult coalition. I'm sure that the opposition leaves here today with a feeling of having succeeded, but the truth is that the Israel people are the losers, and in that, we have all failed as Knesset members, now that we are headed for elections. Right-wing and centrist MKs should have been able to form a government within the current Knesset and spare the country the waste of money and time that elections entail. I accept the blame on behalf of all of us for what has happened.
Politics is the art of making compromises. This is how I worked throughout the past year as chairman of the Yamina party and head of the Knesset Committee, and this is how I will continue to work.
I want to thank all Knesset members, as all of you were sent here to do good, to benefit those who voted for you, and you have done all that you could.
I would also like to thank all those who work in the Knesset who worked into the late hours of the night, day after day, week after week.
I want to thank all the political advisers and I am happy that we managed to deal with the issues of wages and work conditions for them. I want also to thank all the party workers whose job goes on behind the scenes to help us, direct us, and focus us so that we do the best work possible for our voters. Unfortunately we were unable to improve conditions for party workers but there is now cross-party consensus on this issue and I am confident that in the next Knesset, this will be rectified.
The following words are ones I have spoken on a number of occasions from the Knesset podium, and as we now depart in preparation for the coming elections, I would like to conclude with them -- the words of the Rebbe R' Elimelech of Lizhensk: "Adraba, [may G-d] put into our hearts the ability to see the good in our fellow man and not what is lacking; may we speak of others in an upright and fitting manner before You, and let no thought of hatred of our fellow man be in our hearts."