Hadash-Ta’al slams Lapid, Michaeli for refusing to block barring of Arab parties

Carrie Keller-Lynn is a political and legal correspondent for The Times of Israel

The Arab-led Hadash-Ta’al faction is striking out against attempts to disqualify two other Arab parties, Ra’am and Balad, from running in the upcoming November elections, though doing so would help its own electoral chances.

The Central Elections Committee is currently debating a petition to disqualify Balad and already dismissed two against Ra’am, but several parties, including Likud, Religious Zionism, Otzma Yehudit, Labor, and Yesh Atid are sitting out the vote.

Hadash-Ta’al accuses Labor leader Merav Michaeli and Prime Minister Yair Lapid — who runs Yesh Atid — of running away, and says it will affect their ties.

“Instead of sending a democratic message of fighting racism, they choose to ignore Arab society and silently agree with the discourse of incitement and harm to its representatives,” a statement reads.

Disqualifying Ra’am or Balad would help Hadash-Ta’al garner a bigger chunk of the Arab vote, growing their non-aligned wedge and likely hurting opposition leader Benjamin Netanyahu’s bid to regain power by shrinking the size of his camp, which is currently polling stronger than parties hailing from the Lapid-led anti-Netanyahu bloc.

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