Parliament to Vote for New Israel Prime Minister
In late 2019, Israel's Prime Minister Bejamin Netanyahu was sentenced with corruption charges. Many argued for his removal of office, but the state has no law that requires a PM to step down if indicted. Netanyahu described the charges as a "coup" by his opponents to take his seat. After proving himself innocent of some of the charges, he agreed to step down from his position in a rotational manner - in 18 months he would become the secondary prime minister and his liberal-zionist opponent "Benny" Gantz would become the “designated prime minister in rotation." This would have marked the first time the nation has had two Prime Ministers.
Since November, issues mounted between Netanyahu and Gantz and they were not able to come to an agreed power-sharing deal. They formed a temporary alliance to overcome the COVID-19 crisis in the country but could not work together due to their ideological differences. In a desperate plea for order, the President of Israel requested the Knesset (Israeli Parliament) to vote on a Prime Minister.
“I am informing you that I do not see the possibility of forming a government and I entrust the formation of a government to the Knesset...I hope that the Knesset members will be able to form a majority in such a way that a government can be formed as soon as possible and to prevent a fourth round of elections.”
Three elections were held on the matter and each time they ended without a clear winner. The most recent was last month. The two candidates and the Knesset have been given three weeks to come to a final agreement, or a fourth public election will be held for the matter. Netanyahu has had a recent surge in polls due to his professional handling of the pandemic, so he is likely to try to stall agreements for a fourth election in August.