Jerusalem Mayor Nir Barkat on Monday endorsed Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu for reelection. On a tour of the city with Netanyahu, Barkat told the Prime Minister that “you and your government have strengthened Jerusalem in an unprecedented manner, and you have brought Jerusalem to growth and prosperity. I support you and I know you will continue to protect a united Jerusalem from all international pressures in a wise and intelligent manner.”
Netanyahu thanked Barkat for his support, saying that “we are committed to protecting Jerusalem. This is my city, this is our city. We are standing up to international pressures and repelling them, and we will never allow it to be divided. We are building in Jerusalem, and we will continue to build there and throughout the entire State of Israel.”
Netanyahu took the opportunity to make a last-minute appeal to voters. “I ask all Israelis to make up their minds – whether they are voting for a divided Israel, or for a united and strong Israel. I have no doubt that many voters will choose to return to the Likud-Yisrael Beytenu. There is no other party that is capable of leading this country,” Netanyahu said.
Netanyahu also deflected criticism leveled at him by the left over his appointing of Moshe Kahlon to the post of Director of the Israel Lands Administration Sunday. The appointment two days before the election was not an attempt to curry favor with any constituency, nor a publicity stunt, Netanyahu said. “Kahlon is the right man for the job. We will lower the cost of apartments, as we did the cost of cell phone service,” a process Kahlon was responsible for achieving during his stint as a minister. “When you vote for a big party like the Likud-Yisrael Beytenu, you vote for a united Jerusalem and give us the power to lower home prices,” Netanyahu added.