Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu called for an early election after failing to agree on a budget with his coalition partners, saying the vote should be held “as soon as possible” for the good of the country. In a televised announcement Tuesday, Netanyahu said the election was necessary to ensure “a responsible security and economic policy” in the face of the economic downturn and threats to Israel’s security from Iran and elsewhere. The election will ideally happen in three months’ time, he said, rather than in October 2013, as originally scheduled. “It is my obligation as the prime minister to put the national interest above everything else,” Netanyahu said. “So I have decided that it is in the best interest for the state of Israel to go to elections now and as soon as possible.”
Netanyahu said he had concluded after talks with the heads of the other parties in his coalition that it was not currently possible to pass a “responsible budget with a long-term outlook” for Israel. “We are at the start of an election year and I am sorry that during an election year it is difficult for parties to put the national interest above the party interest,” he said. “The result of this could be the breaking of the budget and a massive increase in the deficit which will force us very quickly into the position of the economies that are disintegrating in Europe. I won’t let that happen here.”
Full Article: Netanyahu calls early election for Israel – CNN.com.