An independent lawmaker who broke with the Yisrael Beytenu party in 2016 over its joining the governing coalition announced Tuesday she would form a new party.
“My assistants will leave the office tomorrow and go to submit the binder of the [party’s] founders to the population registry,” MK Orly Levy-Abekasis told a conference in Sderot.
With talk of elections in the air as Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is beset by legal woes and the coalition wrangles over legislation exempting ultra-Orthodox students from military service, Levy-Abekasis warned political leaders that her party would pose a threat.
“I recommend to the party leaders not to fear elections but to fear the new party that was founded,” she said.
Knesset protocol says that leaving a party prohibits an incumbent MK from running on any already existing slate in the next election, meaning if Levy-Abekasis wanted another term in office she needed to form a new party.
Elections are currently scheduled for November 2019, but talk of a much-earlier vote has run rampant in recent days amid a simmering coalition crisis over ultra-Orthodox military conscription.
Levy-Abekasis announced in May 2016 that she would leave Yisrael Beytenu over its agreement to enter into the Likud-led government, saying that the party had abandoned its social platform during negotiations to enter the coalition.
She first said last year she was considering forming a party for the next elections.
The daughter of former foreign minister David Levy, Levy-Abekasis was a model and television presenter prior to entering the Knesset in 2009.