A joint Likud-Labor government is not on the table, Deputy Environmental Protection Minister Ofir Akunis stated Saturday.
"Labor will not be invited to the government," Akunis explained, during an address at a cultural event in Nes Ziona. "Buji [nickname for Yitzhak Herzog – ed.] and [Tzipi] Livni have a worthless and brutal smear campaign against the Prime Minister and against Likud, and they will not have a place in the next government."
Akunis also noted that Labor's policies "place them on the far left of the political spectrum" – among other things, being adamant about a withdrawal behind 1949 Armistice Lines, with low possibility of agreeing to keep settlement blocs – and thus it has negated for itself the possibility of a joint government with Likud.
The remarks follow recent polls suggesting that just 19% of the Israeli public support a joint Labor-Likud government, and that more Israelis support a right-wing government over a left-wing government.
Regardless, Akunis added, Jewish Home will be in the government – and that claims to the contrary are simply a pre-elections spin.
"We announced at the beginning of elections season that Jewish Home will have a central place in the next government – and so it will," he said.
Akunis concluded by calling on Kulanu founder Moshe Kahlon to make his allegiances clear – so that potential Likud or right-wing voters do not err and vote for someone who supports Labor and a left-wing government.