Today the Knesset discussed the eight year anniversary of the evacuation of Gush Katif. I’m not going to get into the politics of the subject but as Knesset Jeremy, I thought I’d share with you my stat sheet.
Only 14 of the 67 MKs who voted for the disengagement in the first reading back in late 2004 are still in Knesset. Of the 45 who voted against, 21 are still in Knesset.
48% of the opponents of disengagement from the 16th Knesset remain in the 19th Knesset. The fact that just about half of disengagements opponents have survived three consecutive elections is quite impressive. Disengagement opponents enjoyed many positions in the last government and in this government include Ministers Gilad Erdan, Uzi Landau, Gideon Sa`ar, Uri Ariel and Speaker Yuli-Yoel Edelstein.
10 of the 14 MKs who favored disengagement are in the current coalition including six from Likud. They include Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and his fellow Likud Ministers Yuval Steinitz, Silvan Shalom, Yisrael Katz, Limor Livnat and Likud MK Tzachi Hanegbi. Four of the six Livni Party MKs voted for disengagement, including MKs Meir Sheetrit and Amram Mitzna along with Ministers Tzipi Livni and Amir Peretz.
Three current senior Labor MKs supported disengagement, Labor’s #2 Isaac Herzog, #3 Eitan Cabel and #5 Binyamin (Fouad) Ben-Eliezer. The final disengagement supporter still serving in Knesset is Meretz leader Zahava Gal-On.
So what is the breakdown of the 80% of the MKs who voted for the disengagement and are now gone. The Shinui party and its 14 MKs who voted for disengagement would self combust a year later. Most of the 15 Likud MKs that voted for disengagement left for Kadima before losing their seats. A majority of the 15 Labor MKs who voted for disengagement defected to Kadima or Independence before disappearing. The 5 Meretz MKs and 2 Ra’am-Ta’al MKs who supported the disengagement have been replaced by their parties younger guard. Only politicos can tell you what happened to Am Ehad’s Ilana Cohen and Yisrael Beitenu’s Michael Nudelman.
Some more stats for you: Five of the eight MKs who either abstained or were not present are no longer in Knesset. The three that remain are Arabs MKs Mohammad Barakeh, Ahmad Tibi and Jamal Zahalka. There are 4 opponent MKs who took a hiatus of a term or less from the Knesset compared to 5 supporter MKs who took a forced hiatus vacation. Interestingly, 10 new Bayit Yehudi MKs + 9 new Yisrael Beitenu MKs cancel out Lapid’s 19 new MKs.
This interesting stat sheet can be used as another argument supporting the conclusion that for an Israeli politician the smart move is to vote against concession of land.