Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Initial results: Netanyahu gets 73% of vote in Likud race


Yup. That’s Bibi. The little dictator has already began plotting against the “settlers” (his term, not mine!). Watch him as he attempts to destroy, not only
Feiglin, but anyone who is religious or lives in Yesha.

You thought Olmert was bad? Wait until you see BiBi II. He has been waiting for a chance to get even with all those people who put him out to pasture before, and now he will have it.

A sad day for Israel.

Last update - 03:28 15/08/2007
By Mazal Mualem, Haaretz Correspondent and The Associated Press

Likud Chairman Benjamin Netanyahu appeared to have won an overwhelming victory in the Likud primary elections Tuesday, as a partial count put him far ahead of his opponents.

With 80 percent of the votes counted - some 15,000 ballots - Netanyahu received 75 percent of the vote. The other two candidates in the leadership race - Moshe Feiglin and Danny Danon - received 23 percent and 4 percent respectively.

Only 39 percent of Likud voters cast their ballots in the party's primaries, Israel Radio reported.

Netanyahu is expected to consider steps to limit the strength of Feiglin, a religious settler with a platform that calls for barring Arabs from the Knesset, encouraging non-Jews to emigrate and pulling Israel out of the United Nations

"Likud as a democratic movement has to find ways to protect itself," a source close to Netanyahu said.

"There is no choice but to find ways to stop the phenomenon. There is a problematic situation here. A group that is not an integral part of Likud is trying to dictate its agenda. There are communities that do not have even one Likud voter but have dozens or hundreds of Likud members."

Political sources said the former prime minister is also attempting to preserve the movement's public image as a moderate force. This is reflected in Netanyahu's personal message mailed to voters: "Our rivals could portray us as a radical political movement, which cannot be trusted to take the helm," Netanyahu wrote.

Feiglin's people do not seem to be concerned by the statements. Feiglin, who until recently was considered an extremist and bizarre leader, was in good spirits Tuesday.

"Jewish leadership should be placed at the head of the nationalist camp and that begins today," he told reporters, adding that "even if it doesn't happen this time, there will be other campaigns."

Netanyahu said he will now begin the real battle for the premiership.

Netanyahu's first act is expected to be a public call to Labor Chairman and Defense Minister Ehud Barak to make good on his promise during the Labor primary to agree a date for national elections immediately after the release of the final Winograd report on last summer's Lebanon War.

Reporters boycotted Netanyahu's victory speech late Tuesday night after a last-minute venue change was made at the convention center in Tel Aviv. The press says that Netanyahu backed out of a previously made agreement when he decided to move the speech into a side room.

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