Yisrael Beitenu

 

 

Yisrael Beitenu

Yisrael Beitenu

Founded in 1999

The Yisrael Beitenu (“Israel is our Home”) party was established by Avigdor Liberman in 1999, prior to the elections for the 15th Knesset. At the time of its foundation, the party appealed primarily to immigrants from the former Soviet Union. During the term of the 15th Knesset, Yisrael Beitenu joined together with the National Union (HaIhud HaLeumi), and the two parties ran on a single list in the Knesset elections for the 16th Knesset in 2003Towards the elections for the 17th Knesset in 2006, Yisrael Beitenu left the joint list and again ran as an independent party that appealed to right-wing secular voters and to immigrants from the former Soviet Union.

 

The party reached the peak of its power in the 2009 elections for the 18th Knesset, when it won 15 seats and became the third largest party in the Knesset. In the elections for the 19th Knesset in 2013, Yisrael Beitenu ran with the Likud on a joint list called Likud-Beitenu.

 

Yisrael Beitenu offers an unusual combination of hawkish, right-wing positions on matters of foreign policy and security, and secular positions on the religious-secular divide. In terms of the former, the party’s proposed solution for the conflict with the Palestinians is based upon population exchanges and the creation of two ethnically homogeneous states. Yisrael Beitenu also holds right-wing fiscal positions, and its platform attests to its commitment to encouraging private enterprise. An issue that is of major concern to the party is the system of government  in Israel. The party's solution for the issue of instability is  the adoption of a presidential system.  

table
Election Year Votes Count Number Of Seats Share Of Votes List Of Candidates Platform
2019 173,004 5 4.0 Candidates Candidates
2015 214,906 6 5.1 Candidates Candidates Platform Platform
2009 394,577 15 11.7 Candidates Candidates Platform Platform
2006 281,880 11 9.0 Candidates Candidates Platform Platform
1999 86,153 4 2.6 Candidates Candidates Platform Platform

Note that the candidates and platforms in this table are in Hebrew.

Avigdor Liberman, Yuri Stern, and Uzi Landau.

Avigdor Liberman was appointed Minister of National Infrastructure in Ariel Sharon’s first government, and served as Minister of Transportation in Sharon’s second government. His term as Transport Minister ended when he was dismissed due to his opposition to the disengagement from the Gaza Strip. Liberman represented Yisrael Beytenu during part of the term of Ehud Olmert’s government, in which he held the Strategic Affairs portfolio.

 

Yisrael Beytenu MK Yitzhak Aharonovich also represented the party at the government table, serving as Minister of Tourism in Olmert’s government. After the elections for the 18th Knesset, Yisrael Beytenu became a senior coalition partner in Binyamin Netanyahu’s second government and received five ministerial positions. Yitzhak Aharonovich served as Minister of Internal Security and Avigdor Liberman served as Minister of Foreign Affairs. They continued to hold these positions  during Netanyahu's third government.