Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu is planning to back Minister of Tourism Uzi Landau as the next President of Israel if Landau officially joins the race, Yisrael Hayom reports.
Netanyahu will reportedly join Foreign Minister Avigdor Liberman in backing Landau, a member of Liberman’s Yisrael Beytenu party.
Former Knesset speaker Reuven Rivlin, a member of Netanayhu’s Likud party, is also planning to run for President. Rivlin’s relationship with Netanyahu remains shaky; the Prime Minister replaced Rivlin with current Knesset speaker Yuli Edelstein in the 19th Knesset, and Rivlin has on occasion been critical of Netanyahu’s statements.
Rivlin has been particularly blunt in his criticism of Liberman, saying in mid-2013 that the Yisrael Beytenu head is “all about politics, nothing more” and does not share the Likud party’s values.
Rivlin currently enjoys more support than any other presidential candidate, according to a recent poll.
Landau has not yet officially declared candidacy, but has been meeting with Members of Knesset in a bid to see what degree of support he could expect were he to join the race. In the upcoming days he is expected to meet with MKs from the Jewish Home party and the hareidi Yahadut Hatorah and Shas factions.