Bennett’s gambit: Could his candidacy unblock Israel’s political system?

If Naftali Bennett is serious about expanding his party’s outreach as he stated to a Politico interviewer, he has to convince his party that he is serious about being prime minister.

By AMIEL UNGAR
April 4, 2018 11:49
4 minute read.
Bennett’s gambit: Could his candidacy unblock Israel’s political system?

Naftali Bennet . (photo credit: MARC ISRAEL SELLEM/THE JERUSALEM POST)

In the recently concluded coalition crisis that had Israel on the verge of snap elections, Jewish Home leader Naftali Bennett dropped his usual refrain that he would vie for the prime ministership only after Benjamin Netanyahu had departed the political scene. During the crisis Bennett warned that if Netanyahu insisted on forcing unnecessary and wasteful elections on Israel, he, Bennett, would compete against him.

It would be a pity if Bennett, now that the crisis has been averted, slunk back to his waiting-in-line approach. First of all the strategy is useless; Bennett cannot fly under the radar. Likud rivals such as Culture Minister Miri Regev berate Bennett for even presuming to aspire to Netanyahu’s post as if this was lèse-majesté rather than normal competitive politics in a democracy. Whatever he does now, Bennett has been marked as a usurper in waiting.

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