Knesset opens winter session marred by government rift
While coronavirus figures fell for the third day running, the Knesset opened its winter session on Monday with dire forebodings of its brevity, due to the widening gap between the heads of government, PM Binyamin Netanyahu and FM Benny Gantz and their parties. The argument over the budget is symptomatic. By December, the Likud finance minister Yisrael Katz must deliver the 2020 budget and by March 2021, the 2021 budget, or else the government falls and the Knesset dissolves. Gantz’s party accuses Likud of foot-dragging so as to trigger another election “for which we are ready,” he added. The two are also at odds on covid exit strategy. While Netanyahu maintains that continuing the lockdown for another week will solidify its successful impact, Kahol Lavan is pressing for the reopening of trade and revival of demonstrations without delay.