Political deals did not shape the new Likud Knesset list. At the end of the day, it turned out that most of the deals actually had a marginal influence. Unlike most parties, the Likud list was not chosen by a steering committee or a popularity poll. Instead, 70,000 Likud members voted, reflecting the current public mood.
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu may not like it; Leftist parties may laugh at it; and senior ministers may pay the price for it, but the Likud shifted Right because the public, overall, has shifted Right. That's the actual story.
Much can be said about the merger of Likud and Yisrael Beytenu and the sharpening struggle between the Right and the Left. But there are some who continue to claim to represent "the Center." It is a good thing that Tzipi Livni clearly announced her membership in the Leftist bloc. She took off her disguise, and the Likud, with its days ahead of it, can remove its disguise as well.
Livni would do well to abandon her claim that "she had no choice." It doesn't transmit reliability. Even her insistence on dismantling Kadima in exchange for MKs joining her is a dirty move. Fortunately for Livni, her party's list will comprise opportunists who no longer have any shame to lose. Otherwise, some of them would most likely be offended.