Likud MK Gideon Saar, a longtime rival of Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu, came out on Thursday against a proposed bill to grant him immunity from prosecution while in office, which Netanyahu is reportedly backing.
“This legislation offers zero benefit and causes maximum damage,” warned Saar in an interview with Channel 12.
While Saar declined to say that he would vote against an immunity bill, he noted that “we told the public [during the recent election campaign] that we weren’t going to do this. I think a law like this will hurt Likud and won’t help the prime minister.”
He added that he “isn’t the only one who’s concerned” within Likud’s top ranks. Saar made a comeback in the last Likud primaries, taking fourth place in the voting after a two-year timeout from politics. He is seen as a frontrunner to succeed Netanyahu in the top spot.
Saar’s comments did not go unnoticed in the Likud. A source in the party was quoted by Arutz Sheva as saying that “it isn’t for nothing that the left-wing media keeps embracing Saar because he never misses an opportunity to undermine Netanyahu and try to topple him.”
Blue and White MK Ofer Shelah welcomed the dissent: “Gideon Saar is the first crack in the wall. The honest people in the Likud and in the coalition will not be able to tolerate the direction in which Bibi is heading. We will not let them until they do what is necessary, “said Shelah.