Labor MK Binyamin “Fuad” Ben-Eliezer dropped out of the race for President of Israel, just days before the June 10th election.
Ben-Eliezer quit following a much publicized last minute police investigation, examining whether or not illegally received money to buy an apartment.
Ben-Eliezer is the second MK knocked out of the race for president following much publicized investigations, the first was Minister Silvan Shalom, who dropped out after allegations that he had committed some sex-related crimes.
The Attorney General eventually closed the investigations against Silvan, but as a result Silvan decided to not run.
Ben-Eliezer maintains his innocence, and says he will continue to fight to prove his innocence, and called it a ‘targeted assassination’.
But even if he could prove his innocence in the next few days, the allegations are enough to kill his chance to be in a reasonable position to challenge Ruby Rivlin, the Likud front-runner, in a run-off race.
On the online Israeli political forums they’re taking it a step further, as members discuss how presidential candidate Dalia Itzik, after leaving politics in 2012, was able to afford a NIS 4.5 million luxury apartment in Tel Aviv in 2013. Itzik’s husband works for the Israel Electric Company.
Knesset Speaker Yuli Edelstein has offered Labor the option to postpone the presidential elections for 2 weeks to give them the opportunity to select a different candidate to support.