Former prime minister Ehud Olmert has not ruled returning to politics if Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu decides to advance the next general election to February, sources close to Olmert said Wednesday.
Olmert has been cleared of most of the charges against him and the conviction he received for breach of trust in the Investment Center affair is not expected to be a legal obstacle to running. He is still standing trial on bribery charges in the Holyland scandal, but his lawyers believe the prosecution's case against him is weak.
If Olmert would decide to run, he would try to form a bloc of parties that would run together, including Kadima, Yair Lapid's Yesh Atid, and a new party that former ministers Tzipi Livni and Haim Ramon were in the process of forming.
"There is a lot of pressure on him to run," a source close to Olmert said. "He has not decided or taken any steps. But he is very upset at the way Netanyahu has handled relations with the United States and the Iranian and Palestinian issues and he is concerned about what could happen with four more years of Netanyahu in power."