Netanyahu claims Gantz ‘trying to steal vote’ with bill to block him from power

At meeting of right-wing chiefs amid failure to clinch majority, Netanyahu says planned legislation undermines democracy; Gantz: ‘Bibi, drink a glass of water and accept results’

4 March 2020

Likud leader Benjamin Netanyahu on Wednesday accused his rival Benny Gantz of seeking to undermine democracy and defy the will of the public after it emerged that the Blue and White party would seek legislation to bar him from serving as prime minister due to his upcoming trial.

“Gantz lost and now he’s trying to steal the election,” Netanyahu said at the start of a meeting of right-wing factions that support him, as a near-final tally of votes in Monday’s election showed his bloc at 58 seats, three short of the Knesset majority he craved. The bloc that opposes him has 62 seats.

Blue and White on Wednesday confirmed it was working on getting a majority to support a law that would prevent an indicted prime minister from serving, which would effectively oust the premier. Gantz proposed such a law after the September election, but it was struck down at the time by Yisrael Beytenu leader Avigdor Liberman. However, Liberman could support it this time, according to a senior source who has spoken with Liberman about the matter, placing Netanyahu on the defensive.