Netanyahu hints he will seek immunity from prosecution

Netanyahu said he would announce his decision by Tuesday. But he left no doubt about his direction when he defended the concept of seeking immunity.

Challenger Gideon Sa’ar and Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, leader of the Likud (photo credit: COURTESY/MARC ISRAEL SELLEM)
Challenger Gideon Sa’ar and Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, leader of the Likud
(photo credit: COURTESY/MARC ISRAEL SELLEM)
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu appeared to hint that he will seek immunity from prosecution in a speech to Likud activists at the Likud’s Hanukkah party at Tel Aviv’s Dan Panorama Hotel on Sunday night.
Netanyahu said he would announce his decision by Tuesday. But he left no doubt about his direction when he defended the concept of seeking immunity.
"Immunity is a foundation stone of democracy,"  Netanyahu told the crowd.
Blue and white responded sarcastically by saying that it was nice that Netanyahu cared so much about democracy.

Netanyahu praised Likud members for voting in the primary despite bad weather conditions. “We have a democratic party and there was a decisive decision,” he said, mocking Blue and White for not holding leadership primaries. Netanyahu said he cannot say that he would take an Advil from the headache he got from Blue and White’s leaders, because another investigation would be opened against him.
Criticizing Supreme Court judges for their plan to decide on Tuesday whether he could form a government under indictment, Netanyahu said he did not believe that they would intervene and “deal a critical blow to democracy.”

Netanyahu was greeted at the event by chants of “Bibi, king of Israel.”

Likud MK Gideon Sa’ar faced party activists heckling him and calling him a traitor.
While the overwhelming majority of the crowd received Sa’ar warmly, an activist told him to “go home,” and another called him “a shame” because he ran against Netanyahu in Thursday’s Likud leadership race.
Sa’ar was given a front row seat next to cabinet ministers at the event in which Netanyahu reached out to the challenger he defeated in the Likud primary. 
A Midgam company poll taken on Sunday for Channel 12 found that if a Knesset election would be held now, the political stalemate would continue. Netanyahu’s Center-Right bloc would win 56 seats, as would Blue and White leader Benny Gantz’s Center-Left bloc, while Yisrael Beytenu would receive eight mandates.
Blue and White would win 34 seats, Likud 32, Joint List 13, Shas eight, United Torah Judaism seven, New Right and Labor Gesher five each and four each for the Union of Right-wing Parties and the Democratic Union. The poll of 507 respondents representing a statistical sample of the adult Israeli population had a 4.4% margin of error.
Asked if they supported immunity for prosecution for Netanyahu, 33% said yes, 51% said no and 16% said they did not know.