Day after election Labor just happy to be alive

The party was saved “from death,” says Yoram Marciano, a leading Labor activist cited by the Israel Hayom newspaper.

By World Israel News Staff 

Labor was a longtime ruling party of Israel and the Jewish State’s founding Prime Minister David Ben Gurion headed the Workers Party which would later merge into Labor.

However, just over seven decades since the establishment of the state, the current version of the Labor party is expressing relief that it won any seats at all in Israel’s second Knesset election of 2019.

In April’s vote, it plummeted to six seats in the 120-member Israeli parliament, and partial results from Tuesday’s election show a very similar if not identical finish.

Current leader MK Amir Peretz did not even show up at election night headquarters after polls closed at 10:00 p.m. on Tuesday night.

He reportedly relayed a message of gratitude to activists, thanking them for their effort.

Peretz had recruited Orly Levy-Abekasis, who had served as an MK in the past, to integrate her Gesher list into the Labor ticket for Tuesday’s election. It added to what was already a platform heavily emphasizing socio-economic issues.

Looking at the situation from a perspective that the cup is half-full, some Labor leaders are breathing a sigh of relief with a feeling that now that the party has survived the battle for its parliamentary life, it can set out on the task of rebuilding from the ground floor.

The party was saved “from death,” says Yoram Marciano, a leading activist cited by the Israel Hayom newspaper.

He says that Peretz has much work to do but adds that it must be remembered that the current chairman, who was elected on July 1 after serving at the post previously from 2005 to 2007, inherited a party that is in tremendous financial debt and is suffering from the retirement from politics or even defection of top MKs.

Blue and White leader Benny Gantz said early Wednesday morning that he had already contacted Peretz about the possibility of bringing Labor-Gesher into a Blue and White-led government.

During the election campaign, Peretz repeatedly stated that he would not sit in a government that is headed by incumbent Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.  A senior party official told Israel Hayom that Peretz will keep his word.