Labor Wants to Cement Slate With Livni's Hatnuah Next Week

Labor leader Isaac Herzog eyes agreement soon, but sources say Tzipi Livni is playing hard to get.

Olivier Fitoussi

Labor Party chairman MK Isaac Herzog intends to present an agreement to his party as early as next week to run jointly with the Hatnuah faction in the coming election.

AFP

A senior Labor figure said, “The agreement is not yet finalized but Herzog would like to complete it within a few days.” The election is set for March 17.

Sources in Hatnuah said Monday that talks over a joint slate with Labor were still at an early stage and that its chairwoman, outgoing Justice Minister Tzipi Livni, has still not given her final go-ahead to the move.

Livni on Monday held a brief meeting with Yesh Atid chairman – and outgoing Finance Minister – Yair Lapid, at the latter’s request. However, it is believed the two leaders are far from any understandings that would link their two parties.

As far as is known, there are no significant talks underway on the possibility of joint action by Yesh Atid and Hatnuah.

Most of the current discussion between Livni and Herzog is over the place of Hatnuah representatives on a joint ticket, and the question of how many places would be reserved for Livni’s faction on a joint roster.

It appears at present that Labor will reserve a place on its slate for Livni and two former Labor Party chairmen – outgoing Environmental Protection Minister Amir Peretz and MK Amram Mitzna; however, it is unlikely that Mitzna will be placed among the top 10 names on the ticket.

An opinion poll conducted by the Knesset TV channel, published yesterday, predicted that a joint Labor-Hatnuah slate would garner 23 Knesset seats in the upcoming election, while Likud would receive only 21.