The education minister Rafi Peretz came out against the members of the LGBT community. You have strongly condemned him, and yet it seems that members of the LGBT community, specifically in Israel, at least the very vocal ones, actively speak out against you. Why do you think that is, and how does that make you feel?
Well, first I learned that it is not something unique. In my meetings overseas, I meet other LGBT politicians from the right wing, and I see that this happens in the rest of the world too. The vocal, as you said, LGBT activists who were traditionally mainly in the left… You have to give credit to the left, because the left was the first to promote LGBT issues and gay rights, and so on and so forth.
They would like to see the right as homophobic, as ignorant, as racist and uneducated as can be. It makes them easier to feel on the ‘good’ side versus the ‘evil’ side.
Reality is much more complex mainly in here in Israel, where the traditional division between left and right is different from the rest of the world.
I am actually the first person to be elected on open primaries, out of the closet in Israel, right or left. Now, yes, we have disagreements with some of our coalition members… When I need to stand up and say what I think, I do that.
We have a very large LGBT caucus within Likud. These are my supporters, and they follow me, and we are going a long way together for a long time.
This is what I try to tell my left-wing friends, our flag, the gay flag is all about variety. All about pluralism. So be more open minded than you are right now. This is what I tell them. It will happen, but it will take time.