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Bennett: Divisive Netanyahu Unsuitable as PM
By Staff, Agencies
“Israeli” Prime Minister Naftali Bennett insisted Friday that his predecessor and opposition chairman Benjamin Netanyahu is unsuited to once again hold the premiership, but clarified that he would not rule out sitting in a future government headed by the “Likud” leader.
Bennett said he has not decided whether or not to run again. He is instead focused on preparing Zionist Foreign Minister Yair Lapid to replace him as interim prime minister, as per their coalition agreement, he said.
Bennett and Lapid announced their decision on Monday to advance legislation to dissolve the 24th Knesset after just one year in power due to their inability to keep their narrow, yet politically diverse coalition, together any longer.
“I’ll ask myself one thing only: Whether, given the unprecedented rift in ‘Israell’, will my entry to the elections help to unify,” he told Channel 12.
Pressed on his approach to the upcoming election if he does decide to run, Bennett expressed his opposition to Netanyahu but refused to rule out future cooperation with him.
“Netanyahu is not the right person [to serve as prime minister]. His behavior is the most divisive behavior I have seen in years,” Bennett argued, citing the “poison machine” he said the Likud leader has unleashed on his political opponents and insisting that it has polluted “Israeli” politics with falsehoods and nastiness.
Nonetheless, the Zionist premier argued that Netanyahu should not be disqualified from serving as prime minister, in an apparent reference to his opposition to an 11th-hour attempt by his coalition partners to pass legislation barring MKs such as Netanyahu, who have been indicted for serious offenses, from serving as prime minister.
Bennett argued that the “Israelis” should be able to decide who will be prime minister.
“I will not invalidate anyone. If everyone rejects everyone, we will have no government, and we’ll have to go through four more elections,” he said, differentiating himself from most of his other coalition partners — left, right and center — who have ruled out serving under Netanyahu and view him as a danger to the entity.
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