Barkat criticizes Likud's attempts to court Gantz

MK Nir Barkat: I do not think Gantz should be Prime Minister, certainly not with eight seats.

Arutz Sheva Staff ,

Nir Barkat
Nir Barkat
Avshalom Sassoni/Flash 90

Senior Likud MK Nir Barkat on Saturday night criticized the Likud's attempts to court Defense Minister Benny Gantz in an attempt to convince him to join a coalition with the Likud.

"It's a mistake, I do not think Gantz should be Prime Minister, certainly not with eight seats," Barkat told Channel 12 News in an interview.

"I think the person who should be the Prime Minister of Israel is the leader of the largest party in the coalition. We must not allow a party with six or eight seats to lead the country. We want the Prime Minister to have strong validation from the public, so I do not think Gantz with eight seats should lead the government."

Barkat did not rule out running against Benjamin Netanyahu for the leadership of the Likud, but stressed, "It is not on the agenda. When the time comes, we will see what happens."

The comments follow a report on Friday which said that Gantz and Netanyahu met at the conclusion of the recent Knesset session.

According to the report, Gantz sought the Likud's support for the new Draft Law, but during the meeting Netanyahu brought up a proposal similar to the one that he has made to Gantz in the past: Gantz would be appointed as Prime Minister in a coalition that the Likud would be part of and would be right-wing but headed by Gantz.

Gantz, for his part, did not make Netanyahu understand that this was going to happen. Sources close to the Defense Minister would not comment.

Netanyahu has repeatedly tried to persuade Gantz to form a new government with the Likud in the current Knesset, in which Gantz will serve first as Prime Minister for two years, and will be followed by Netanyahu serving as Prime Minister. So far, these attempts have been unsuccessful.