As Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu undergoes intensive police investigations of alleged wrongdoing, his Likud party has begun making preparations for the possibility that he may soon be forced to resign from office, The Times of Israel reported on Thursday.
Likud MK Oren Hazan, the newly appointed deputy coalition chairman, told Army Radio that some party leaders are planning for the worst.
“There are more than a few people who are already forming factions and turning to activists in the field saying, ‘Listen, I’m also going to be running for the head of the Likud party in the very near future,’” he said, “and it pains me.”
On Wednesday night, an unnamed Likud minister was quoted in the media as saying the latest revelations in the investigations “are a game-changer.”
“You can smell it in the air that the era of Netanyahu is coming to an end. We need to prepare for the day after,” he said.
Hazan claims he doesn’t smell that smell, but acknowledges it’s a difficult time for Netanyahu. It’s hard for a prime minister to run the country while under investigation, Hazan noted, while pledging his support for Netanyahu, whom he believes will be vindicated.
“I believe that there will be nothing [found in the probes],” he said. “There is also the moral, sociopolitical aspect. Ultimately, there is only one thing that decides [who governs the country] and that is the citizens of Israel.”