Bennett: I didn't enter politics to be praised

Defense Minister Naftali Bennett says he would welcome becoming Health Minister to deal with coronavirus crisis.

Arutz Sheva Staff ,

Naftali Bennett
Naftali Bennett
IDF spokesperson

Defense Minister Naftali Bennett stated that he will be happy to take on the health portfolio, which was vacated following Health Minister Litzman's decision to move to the Housing Ministry.

In an interview with Channel 13 News Tuesday, Bennett said: "If Netanyahu would suggest that I be the Health Minister with full powers over the coronavirus campaign and the powers to establish a national anti-epidemic body like in South Korea and Taiwan, I would do it, because it is a national mission first and foremost."

The defense minister, however, made it clear that, although the issue came up with the prime minister, "he did not propose it. The issue came up, but he did not suggest it."

Bennett added, "I know exactly what I would like to do there. Establish such an arrangement so that if there is another outbreak, which can definitely occur around this fall, we will no longer have to destroy the Israeli economy but can, through large-scale testing and large-scale epidemiological investigations, contain the event without closing the economy."

Later in the interview, Minister Bennett referred to the Prime Minister's decision to exclude him from the press conference last night and not to mention him in his thanks, despite the significant part the Defense Ministry has played in dealing with the crisis.

"I didn't enter politics to get warmth and compliments. When I want warmth I turn to my dog Lichi and she always gives me warmth. I don't need anything for that," Bennett said.

The defense minister added, "I have come for the people of Israel and the State of Israel and that is all that interests me, to strengthen the security of the State of Israel and the citizens of Israel."