Deputy Religious Affairs Minister Matan Kahana is considering his political future today, with a midnight deadline for any formal reorganization of his Yamina party.
Three or more party members leaving together to form a new faction are, under Knesset rules, entitled to a share of the party's pre-election funding, something that will be weighing heavily on new party leader Ayelet Shaked -- in order to ensure funding for the remnants of Yamina, at least two party members must remain with her.
Kahana, who had been at former Yamina leader Naftali Bennett's side for years, now seems set to jump ship, headed either for Gideon Sa'ar's New Hope party or to Benny Gantz's Blue & White party. According to recent reports, he favors the latter option.
Writing on Facebook on Sunday, Kahana echoed sentiments expressed just last week by former Prime Minister Naftali Bennett. "My aim is to continue on the journey I set out on together with Bennett," Kahana wrote. "I will exert myself with all my strength in order to form a broad unity government, with the understanding that in the current political situation, a government of just one side [of the political spectrum] would be terrible for the State of Israel.
"I will continue to act to strengthen the Jewish identity of the state, with broad agreements and not with religious wars," he added. "I want to be the home for moderate state Religious-Zionism, for those who let anyone and everyone enter their synagogues, for those who extend a welcoming hand to everyone, even if they don't think like them, and for those who are willing to give even their political foes a glass of water. I want to be the home for those who recall that our task is to join together and unite."
Kahana added that, "During these days, I am re-examining how I can best actualize these goals. I want to thank all our supporters and also those who don't support us ... It's a good thing that we live in a democracy."