Benny Begin: Early elections are a mistake

Benny Begin: Early elections are a mistake

Begin is first member of government to speak out against idea, but momentum too great to stop it now

Benny Begin (photo credit: Flash90)
Benny Begin (photo credit: Flash90)

Dissolving the Knesset and calling early elections is a mistake, according to Likud Minister Benny Begin, who is thus far the only government minister to speak out against Prime Minister Netanyahu’s call for early elections last week.

“Early elections are a mistake,” Begin told the Hebrew daily Makor Rishon. “The current government has set a record for stability not seen for 30 or 40 years. That is my opinion and I will not conceal it.”

Although Israeli media reports indicate that many Knesset members from various factions are displeased with the decision to hold early elections, parliamentarians have largely abstained from speaking out on the subject, and it is now widely believed that nothing will stop the early election momentum now.

MK Yitzhak Vaknin of Shas told reporters: “If you held a secret ballot, 118 [of the 120] MKs would vote against early elections.”

Elections are expected to be held on September 4, more than a year ahead of schedule, Israel’s political leaders indicated on Wednesday. A bill to dissolve the Knesset and set early elections is set to be brought up for discussion next Monday.

The early vote brings forward general elections from their scheduled date on October 22, 2013. Dissolving the Knesset is required to enable early elections.

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