Naftali Bennett Sworn in as Prime Minister of Israel, Ending Netanyahu’s 12-Year Reign
By: Alyssa Wilson
After serving in the role for 12 years, Israel Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has been replaced. On Sunday, Naftali Bennett was sworn in after winning a narrow confidence vote of 60 to 59.
According to CNN, Bennett’s win ushers in a new era for Israel with the most diverse coalition the country has ever seen, including the first Arab party to serve in government.
“Twice in history, we have lost our national home precisely because the leaders of the generation were not able to sit with one and another and compromise. Each was right, yet with all their being right, they burnt the house down on top of us,” Bennett said.
The new prime minister served as the leader of Yamina, a right-wing party with seven seats in Isreal’s parliament, while Netanyahu’s Likud party had over 30 seats. Before being replaced, Netanyahu lashed out at his rivals, saying, “You call yourself the guardians of democracy, but you are so afraid of democracy that you are ready to pass fascist laws against my candidacy.”
President Joe Biden congratulated Bennet and spoke to him over the phone. According to the White House, the two agreed their teams would “consult closely on all matters related to regional security, including Iran.” Bennett’s office said the two leaders “emphasized the importance of the alliance between Israel and the United States, as well as their commitment to strengthening ties between the two countries, and maintaining the security of the State of Israel.”