Party of the Left
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Party of the Left
|מפלגת השמאל name||Modern Hebrew|
|Member of Knesset and Leader of the Knesset Caucus||Avigdor Zeilig|
|Founded||April 27, 2021|
|Preceded by||Constitutional Liberal Party|
Alliance of Greens, Seculars, and Workers
Kisoist foreign policy
Reformation of monarchy
Abolition of monarchy (allegedly)
Secularization of Yisrael (allegedly)
|Seats in the Royal Knesset|
5 / 142
The Party of the Left, also commonly called Ultra-Left or the Blue-Greens (colloquially), is a contemporary far-left third political party in Yisrael, having been a merger of the left-wing flank of the dissolved Constitutional Liberals and the Alliance of Greens, Seculars, and Workers. It is deep in the political minority in the Knesset, opposed to the governing right-wing Royalist Conservative-led coalition.
Platform and philosophy
The Ultra-Left follows in a narrow lane of parties that have made up the hard-left political world in Yisrael. The first of these parties was the Yisraeli Labor Party, which was formed in the late 1950s after labor activists and other left-leaning figures grew disillusioned with the moderate liberalism and anti-union politics of the ruling Constitutional Liberal Party clique of Asher Berkowitz, the first President of Yisrael after the Year of Blood.
The YLP gained some strength in the late 1960s and 1970s, allying with left-wing Con-Lib Boaz Benayoun, the author of the Yarden peace talks. After the backlash to the Yarden Accords, the YLP struggled to elect any MKs during the Binyamin Schwartz era. In the late 1980s, the YLP piggybacked on the growing success of the triangulating Con-Libs, who ran on the weariness among the electorate in the wake of the Schwartz-era fiscal reforms and foreign policy shifts towards the Western Monarchies. The late 1980s and early 1990s saw among the highest YLP vote counts and MKs elected from left-wing areas.
The rest of the 1990s and the early 2000s were characterized by the bipartisan corruption scandals of the Greenbaum and Hillel administrations and a generally centrist and competitive evenly-split Knesset and narrowly-decided Presidency of Yisrael, leading to more voters gravitating to the Con-Libs and Conservatives, depriving many third parties on both the left and right of much attention or interest. In the late '90s, the Green Party emerged on the scene, further dividing the hard-left vote.
The success of the Eitan Herzog administration's green strategy and pro-metropolitan agenda further kept the YLP and the Greens at the margins of the public debate, with both parties electing between 4 and 9 MKs combined in the mid-late 2000s.
By the start of the 2010s, the YLP and the Greens were on life support. They merged together in early 2012 after the 2012 elections, forming a small, left-wing caucus of just four MKs called the Alliance of Greens, Seculars, and Workers. After a strong midterm election in 2018 in which the Con-Libs and other Left Bloc parties made strong gains, the Alliance had doubled its MKs to 8. However, just two years later in the the 2020 elections, the Alliance was wiped out due to the historic three-way race, the Centrist Revolt, and the Hezekian Reaction, falling to one lone MK, who had barely held onto his seat in a stunning collapse of CLP bastions to the United Center Bloc.
In late 2020 and early 2021, the breakdown in party unity between the mainstream left and far left among the Con-Libs caused the far-left flank to strike out, merging with the Alliance to form the Party of the Left while the other ex-Con-Libs formed the National Liberals.
Organization and hierarchy
The party was founded by a political alliance formed from Michael Aone, former chairman of the Con-Libs, Eitan Hadav, a rising star of the Con-Lib left and outspoken supporter of Yosef Kaduri, and Herschel Aronov, former chairman of the Alliance of Greens, Seculars, and Workers. All three serve on the party's Governing Council, but Hadav, due to his youth and social media influence, was agreed upon to become the party chairman.
A small Governing Council of leading left-wing figures from the defunct Con-Libs and Alliance run the internal affairs of the faction. In return for Hadav (from the Con-Libs) heading the party's apparatus, an Alliance leader (Avigdor Zeilig, the former party's last-standing sitting MK) was made head of the new party's Knesset caucus.
Election results and current representation
The current party leader in the Knesset is MK Avigdor Miller, the lone MK from the defunct Alliance of Greens, Seculars, and Workers party. The party's MK caucus has 5 members, 4 from the dissolved Con-Libs.
The party has no election results. Its first election cycle will be the 2022 midterms.
International Affiliation and Criticism
The party rhetorically aligns itself with the Kiso Pact countries on foreign policy, voicing support for international republican and secular liberal causes and figures abroad. However, there is no formal affiliation with the global organization.
Internationally, the Party of the Left has affiliations with Gelonia's People's Party, Ghant's Socialist Party, Vardana's 11 July Club, Wazhegan's Social Alliance and Councils for Unity and Democracy parties, and North Ottonia's Federalist Party and the Ottonian Labor Front.