The Likud Beiteinu list, 2014 edition

As discussed here at the time, both before and after 2013 Knesset election, Likud and Yisrael Beiteinu presented a joint list for the last election. This joint list still has some interesting implications a year and a half later:

When Likud Party Knesset member Reuven Rivlin was elected president of the State of Israel, the next in line to take his place in the Israeli parliament was Carmel Shama-Hacohen, a Likud member as well. Liberman came with a lucrative proposal to the newly-appointed Shama-Hacohen to appoint him as Israel’s ambassador to the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD). Shama-Hacohen gladly accepted the proposal and left the Knesset. The next in line on the list to replace him was a Knesset member from Liberman’s Yisrael Beitenu Party. The Likud and Yisrael Beitenu had a joint slate in the last elections. Liberman knew very well that dispatching Shama-Hacohen on this diplomatic mission would reduce the number of Likud Knesset members from 20 to 19, while increasing the number of his Knesset members from 11 to 12.

The quote is from an article in Al Monitor on the weakness of PM Benjamin Netanyahu (Likud).

These intra-list dynamics are especially interesting in light of the formal break-off, in early July, of the partnership between the two parties. The breaking of the alliance does not mean an end of their partnership in government, as Lieberman remains Foreign Minister and other Yisrael Beiteinu personnel retain their cabinet seats. Nothing would prevent them from reinstating a joint list for the next election, if they found it in their mutual interest to do so (which, granted, seems unlikely now). Moreover, the usual sanctions under Israeli law to penalize parliamentary groups that split do not apply when the group itself had been formed out of two separate parties.

The two parties are now clearly jockeying for position with their different electorates, which may complicate the functioning of an already factious cabinet and Knesset. Yet for the rest of the Knesset term, the list they put together for the last election will continue to determine the order in which replacement candidates come forward when a member of the former joint Likud Beiteinu list leaves the Knesset.

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