With early polls showing a very split electorate in Israel, Yesh Atid Party leader Yair Lapid may very well find himself in the position of king-maker after the January election. He won’t join just anyone, however, saying he will only consider deals with a coalition government serious about the peace process.
Yesh Atid is a new party this year, the ideological successor to the free market liberal Shinui Party, which was run by Lapid’s father for a decade. In today’s speech Lapid faulted both the Israeli left and right for unreasonable approaches to peace, promising a more serious and “balanced” approach, though stopping short of any serious details.
Lapid mocked Prime Minister Benjmain Netanyahu in particular for claiming that there was “no partner for peace,” asking “what partner is he expecting” and insisting the comments are only making Israel look weak and unreasonable in the international arena.
Weekend polls show Yesh Atid expected to win 14-15 seats, which would make them the third largest bloc in the election, behind the merger far-right Likud-Beiteinu List and the Labor Party, which is looking to return to a politically meaningful alternative position after the split with former leader Ehud Barak.