Activist Naftali Bennett offered a “safety net” on Tuesday to any ministers fired by Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu (Likud) for voting in favor of the Regulation Law on Wednesday.
Bennett, a successful businessman and former director-general of the Council for Jewish Communities in Judea and Samaria, is currently a rising star in resistance circles and is planning to run for leadership of the Jewish Home party prior to elections for the next Knesset.
“The Likud has finished its historical role,” Bennett said an interview withChannel 1 News, noting that the expected failure in passing the Regulation Law will lead to a demolition of Beit El’s Ulpana neighborhood.
“Whoever was not concerned about the Gush Katif refugees for seven years should not expect us to believe his hallucinatory solutions and spins of sawing homes and caring for citizens,” said Bennett, referring to Netanyahu’s plan to move the five endangered apartment buildings from the Ulpana neighborhood to a military area within Beit El.
“If it looks like a duck and walks like a duck,” he added, “then it’s no longer a party belonging to the national camp.”
Bennett served as Netanyahu’s Chief of Staff between 2006-2008 when he led the opposition.
“I declare here unequivocally,” he continued. “I heard that the prime minister announced that he would fire any minister who votes against the government’s position. I appeal to the ministers. Do not be afraid. Go with your conscience.”
“If the prime minister fires you, I pledge to give you a safety net in the JewishHome which is currently becoming the new national camp. You will not be alone.”
On Tuesday it was reported that Netanyahu’s Bureau contacted all ministers and deputy ministers to made clear that the government opposes the proposed Regulation Law and that any ministers or deputy ministers who vote in favor will be fired from the government.
Ministers from the Yisrael Beitenu and Shas parties will likely absent themselves from Wednesday’s Knesset vote, allowing themselves to refrain being forced to vote against their conscience.
Minister of Diaspora and Public Affairs Yuli Edelstein and Deputy Minister Gila Gamliel, both from the Likud, are expected to back the bill despite the threat.
It remains unclear how Minister of Science and Technology Daniel Hershkowitz (Jewish Home) will vote.
Edelstein and Hershkowitz are the only two ministers who have not flinched in stating their intention to support the law. Edelstein said last week that he will vote in favor of the law at any cost.