If not, everyone can understand that this will lead to elections,” the prime minister said.
Under the coalition deal between the Likud party, led by Netanyahu, and Blue and White, the two agreed to pass a budget running through 2021. Netanyahu, however, is now insisting on separate budgets for 2020 and 2021, with a failure to pass a budget allowing him to avoid handing the premiership over to Gantz — as the agreement also requires — and instead go to elections.
If the budget issue is not resolved by late December, early elections would automatically be called, the fourth in two years.
Frustrated by the deadlock, Gantz said earlier this month that he had instructed his party to gather together “all of the relevant bills that will advance equality, fight corruption and other values that are important to us.”
Responding to Gantz’s announcement, Avigdor Liberman, chair of the right-wing opposition Yisrael Beytenu party, told his faction meeting on Monday that the legislative proposals were “nothing but a smokescreen.”
“Gantz does not really intend to promote the laws, he is interested in media noise. Otherwise, how can one explain the fact that he mentioned these laws precisely in the week when a law was proposed to dissolve the Knesset?” Liberman said.
Opposition leader Yair Lapid, speaking at the Yesh Atid-Telem party faction meeting, instead urged Gantz to back his proposal for dissolving the Knesset and calling new elections, which is slated to be voted on Wednesday.