Facing criminal trial, Netanyahu attempts government coalition

Monday, March 1, 2021
 | 
Chad Groening (OneNewsNow.com)

Benjamin Netanyahu (2021)Eyeing upcoming elections in Israel, as well as his own corruption trial, the country’s embattled prime minister is likely to reach out to left-wing parties to form a coalition, a Middle East expert predicts.

Israel is preparing for its fourth election in two years on March 23 as a recent poll showed the Likud Party, led by Benjamin Netanyahu, is predicted to win 28 seats of the 120 seats in the Knesset, more than any other single party. But the Haaretz newspaper reports that forming a governing coalition is in doubt if several right-wing parties, which normally work with Likud, refuse to cooperate.

David Rubin, a former mayor of the Israeli city of Shiloh, tells One News Now that Netanyahu, now 71, is known for appealing to the right-wing votes as Election Day approaches.

“But after the election,” Rubin advises, “[Netanyahu] tries to form a coalition with the Left.”

And that means, Rubin adds, those right-wing parties are left out of the coalition only to witness the government get “pulled to the left.”  

According to the Haaretz story, Shas, United Torah Judaism, Yamina, and Kahanist Religious Zionism are the parties that normally side with Netanyahu.   

Rubin, DavidThere is also the issue of Netanyahu's bribery allegations. The prime minister is accused of bribery, fraud, and breach of trust over an allegation he made telecom-related decisions to help Shaul Elovitch, a billionaire businessmen, and a second allegation he accepted gifts for political favors.

A third criminal case alleges the longtime prime minister helped a newspaper publisher in exchange for favorable coverage.

Netanyahu formally pleaded not guilty to all three charges last month. 

Rubin says there is a strong possibility Netanyahu could be found guilty, which would mean Likud would be seeking a new leader at the same time the elections are taking place.

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