Ex-settler Leader Dani Dayan Eyes Spot on Habayit Hayehudi Ticket

The former head of the Yesha Council of settlements announces that he will run in the upcoming Habayit Hayehudi primary.

Chaim Levinson
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Dani Dayan.
Dani Dayan.Credit: Tomer Appelbaum
Chaim Levinson

Dani Dayan, a former head of the Yesha Council of settlements, announced on Sunday that he will run in the upcoming Habayit Hayehudi primary.

Like the party leader, Naftali Bennett, Dayan’s background is in high-tech. From 2006, he served as chairman of the Yesha Council, the leading settler lobbying group. Despite being a key figure in the largely religious settlement movement and a long-standing resident of the West Bank, Dayan is secular.

Speaking at a joint press conference with Bennett, Dayan said, “If Habayit Hayehudi will be a major force in the next government, we won’t have the disgrace of Tzipi Livni running the negotiations [with the Palestinians].”

Likud Transportation Minister Yisrael Katz also launched an attack on Livni, taking to Facebook to savage the Hatnuah leader, whose fortunes have risen since agreeing to run on a joint ticket with Labor. “Is Livni on drugs?” Katz wrote.

Moshe Kahlon, meanwhile, has reportedly offered the third spot on his newly formed Kulanu party to supermarket mogul Rami Levy. A party spokesperson, however, said Levy still doesn’t have a place on the party slate.

Levy is best known for introducing supermarket price wars to Israel. His chain went public with an IPO in 2007 and is now Israel’s third-largest supermarket retailer.

Other potential Kulanu candidates are said to include Michael Oren, the former Israeli ambassador to the United States; former police commissioner Moshe Karadi; and Itzik Alrov, a social activist who led the 2011 cottage cheese boycott.