Kadima is exercising vigilance leading up to former Prime Minister Ehud Olmert’s decision on whether he will return to the political spotlight. His associates say he is expected to make the announcement on Sunday.
According to top officials in Kadima, if Olmert decides to return, he may be appointed head of the party. On Tuesday, current party leader Shaul Mofaz made clear that he will vacate the leadership seat if Olmert returns.
Although Olmert’s seat leading Kadima is guaranteed, party officials predict that ultimately he will decide not to run in the elections.
While the Mofaz camp would not challenge Olmert, it is preparing for a struggle over Kadima leadership with Tzipi Livni, whom Mofaz defeated in the last primaries. Livni is also debating her return to politics; people are expecting that she will announce her decision after Olmert announces his.
Kadima officials said that in recent days, Livni once again tried to divide the party by recruiting seven MKs to join her, but the attempt failed. Were Livni to lead a separate faction of seven MK’s, it would have significant economic effects on the party, as well as cost the party broadcasting time.
On Tuesday, Livni met with President Shimon Peres at his residence in Jerusalem. Commentators believe that Peres expressed support for Livni’s desire to return to politics.
Meanwhile, MK Ruhama Avraham Balila announced on Tuesday that she will not run for a Knesset seat on the Kadima list.
Read more at ISRAEL HAYOM