Nir Barkat, the former Jerusalem mayor who hopes to succeed Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu as leader of Likud, said Netanyahu got his “considerations” wrong and should have stepped aside in recent weeks, thus thwarting Sunday’s expected swearing-in of an eight party coalition from across the political spectrum, excluding Likud.

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Had Netanyahu moved aside, said Barkat, “Likud and the national camp would have been forming the government on Sunday.”

Barkat spoke in an interview broadcast Saturday as a TV poll showed him in second place, behind former Mossad chief Yossi Cohen, as Likud voters’ preferred candidate to succeed Netanyahu if he were to quit as leader of the party. (Netanyahu has made clear he will lead Likud into opposition if the Naftali Bennett-Yair Lapid coalition is approved by the Knesset, as expected, on Sunday, and has vowed to quickly bring down what he calls “a dangerous left-wing government.”)

Asked who they would back as Likud leader if Netanyahu were to retire, 27 percent of Likud respondents said Cohen, followed by MK Barkat with 16%, according to the Channel 12 news poll.

Read more at Times of Israel.