Thursday, October 25, 2012

What's a Feiglin?

In a previous post, I explained how coalitions work. There is another method of getting your issues into the Knesset and that is called Feiglining. Moshe Feiglin decided that he did not like the direction the country was going in. The Likud was becoming lefter and held positions similar to Labor of old. There was no major party that supported completely canceling the Oslo accords.

Feiglin believes that small parties are bad. They push their issues onto the rest of the country as a minority by blackmailing the ruling parties through coalition agreements. IOW, if a party with 3 seats (2.5%) and a single issue is a make or break faction in the coalition, their issue is going to get a lot more attention and chance for success then 2.5% support deserves. Most importantly, major issues, such as Feiglin wants to impact, can only be effected by a ruling party and not by a coalition agreement. So Feiglin joined the Likud, which is the largest party that historically is closest to his nationalistic viewpoint. He and his supporters signed up a tremendous number of new members and gained a lot of power on the Likud Central Committee.

One of the adverse reactions to the Feiglin method is the formation of Kadima. As the Likud Central Committee became more right wing and prevented the Likud politicians from acting in what they considered to be the national interest, they broke the strangle hold of the central committee by forming a new party. Some elements in the Likud dislike Feiglin because they feel he is an interloper. He should just join the Bayit Yehudi/National Union instead of trying to force his agenda on the party.

Approximately 1/3 of Feiglin's supporters are not religious, but they are true to the Land of Israel. The Bayit Yehudi was formed from the National Religious Party and elements who wanted to be able to include non-practicing members as well who have a love of Israel and Judaism. The reason why Feiglin won't join a party like Bayit Yehudi is because he doesn't feel that it has a chance to become a ruling party. However, if he joined the Bayit Yehudi in a unity move along with the National Union, they could get very close to being a ruling party.

The final question being, is Bayit Yehudi ready to be a ruling party or do they prefer to be the religious wing of whichever party happens to win.

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