Rafi Eitan Laments Downfall of His Pensioners Party

'We were wiped off the map,' Eitan said hoping Pensioners Affairs Min. will outlive party.

Pensioners Affairs Minister Rafi Eitan on Wednesday tried to find reasons for the electoral failure of his Pensioners Party, which had won unprecedented 7 seats in the 2006 elections.

"We were wiped off the map," Eitan said. "Our party went through a hard time recently [when three Pensioners MKs split from the faction], but eight months ago we began reconstructing the party. We were very close to make it into the Knesset again, but the makeover wasn't enough and most pensioners voted either for Lieberman or Kadima."

Eitan said that he would try to make sure that the Pensioners Affairs Ministry, which he set up upon joining Ehud Olmert's coalition in 2006, outlives the party.

"We thought old people need a party to look after their interests," Eitan said. "If they don't, that's fine."

He said that he believes Netanyahu will be the next prime minister. "Tzipi Livni is unable to form a coalition because she doesn't have the necessary majority and the Arab MKs are unreliable."