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Lapid: ‘Election is not between me and Netanyahu, but between the future and the past’

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

Prime Minister Yair Lapid gives a campaign speech on July 20, 2022. (Elad Gutman)
Prime Minister Yair Lapid gives a campaign speech on July 20, 2022. (Elad Gutman)

Prime Minister and Yesh Atid leader Yair Lapid has transitioned into campaign mode, calling for “a strong Yesh Atid” as the “one thing” that can deliver a stable government “without extremists.”

“These elections have been forced upon us, but they could be a one-time opportunity to get out of the mess. To establish a broad and stable national government, without the extremists. Only one thing will allow this to happen: a great, strong Yesh Atid that will stabilize the Israeli ship,” the prime minister says in remarks preceding his party’s Tel Aviv faction meeting.

While calling on one hand for domestic unity, Lapid also distinguishes his party and its assumed political partners with those led by opposition leader Benjamin Netanyahu.

The upcoming November 1 elections, like the four that have preceded them since 2019, are quickly shaping up to be the fifth referendum on whether or not the Likud leader should be at the helm.

“The decision being placed before the citizens of Israel is not between me and Netanyahu. The choice is between the future and the past. The choice is between those who think only of their own good, and those who think of the good of the state,” the prime minister says.

At the same time, Lapid calls attention to the need to unify in the face of challenges, including the continued global pandemic, war in Ukraine, cost of living and that “Israeli democracy is in existential danger.”

“In difficult times, Israelis always knew how to put the quarrels aside and go to work together. This is what we need to do now,” Lapid says.

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