Swinging left to Meretz was a very BAD idea..
Livni’s 1st political move was a classic mistake. Instead of immediately leaning right to secure goodwill within Kadima and without, where she lacks it most and where the country is also leaning most, she went left to the Meretz no man’s land of political oblivion.
Of course the reasoning is simple enough, they are going gaga for Livni on the far left. The glowing media and support is akin to a warm embrace, comfort food for a very weak slim win. Further, the ideological platform she is pushing in negotiations falls squarely in the Meretz camp. Thing is she accomplishes more than just alienating the right in a move like that, she also alienates the left, or in this case Labor party’s leader.
Struck by lightning (Barak)
Barak himself as Prime Minister already flirted with the Meretz platform 10 years ago, it cost him his job. Why on earth Livni thought he may enjoy flirting with that platform openly again, especially in light of his already low opinion of her - all in order to secure her the PM job is beyond me?
Being 1st out of the gate to reinforce the common view that she has sacrificed every principle of her Likud roots, and now even Kadima’s own charter is not a genius play. The notion that this is Sharon’s heir politically we are seeing is as I stated divine comedy. The empress has no clothes so far. Judging by the media roundup below, no one is as of yet tossing her any either. If anything, there’s a concerted effort to challenge the legality of her win within Kadima forming now, and a possible flirt between Labor & Likud on a power sharing agreement. Anyone get the feeling Livni wants to share power and rotate the big PM chair? Me neither.
Livni is not the only one who can form a govt
She is dominating the media, but President Peres can be approached by other factions to form a govt. Peres & Olmert are now racing to get things squared away, Peres may even delay his trip to the USA for the UN general assembly to keep the paltry Livni momentum going. The last thing he wants is to come back in a week or so and be presented with a government option that does not even involve Livni, a national emergency government of the left & the right which leaves out the so called center party and Livni entirely..
Look at this math..
Labor 19, Likud 12, Israel Our Home 11, Shas 12 = 54
NRP 9, UTJ 6, Pensioners 6.
Either of those last three added is enough to secure a slim majority without Kadima, Meretz or elections, and the pensioners and UTJ are easy enough addons. With all the freed up Kadima portfolios it is darn right near a jamboree where everyone gets to keep their corrupt cozy seats, and even get a few juicy new ministries. It is a Kadima nightmare scenario..
Even Assad has a better opinion of Livni than Barak (Haaretz)
Comptroller mulls corruption probe of Kadima primary
(Jpost on the race rift exploding)
Barak – ‘Israel needs nat’l emergency gov’t’
(Jpost on a Labor Likud power sharing agreement)
Olmert: I have decided to resign as prime minister of Israel
(Jpost, everyone assumes Peres will appoint Livni)
Labor sources: Barak seeks early general elections (Haaretz)
Mofaz supporter calls for recount of Kadima primary (Haaretz)
Livni says Kadima will continue to lead Israel (Ynet)
Hitting the brakes
The last link shows Livni is already backtracking to ‘National Unity Government’ talk, meaning that her plans to maintain the current coalition seem stalled entirely, she assumed she could just patch together Olmert’s coalition and tack on Meretz for more seats, but you know what they say about the old adage assume? When you ASSUME you are ‘Making an ASS out of U and ME’.
She better not assume she is guaranteed to be the party leader being offered the shot at forming a govt either, as by displaying further hubris she may be in for a surprise. She also assumed she would landslide the primary, and she assumes she will landslide a general election too..
How many times in one week can you ‘make an ass of yourself’ is the real question?