Netanyahu: Not ‘scared’ to debate Lapid, but he must declare he’s running for PM

Prime Minister Netanyahu denies he is “scared” to debate Opposition Leader Yair Lapid, as he is asked why he didn’t take up Lapid’s call to debate him this evening on TV.

Netanyahu again insists that Lapid must first declare he is running for prime minister before they debate.

“Our country is not a game for ambitious politicians,” the premier says.

He also predicts that together with Naftali Bennett’s Yamina party, his right-wing religious bloc will pick up at least 61 seats, enough for a majority in the Knesset.

Lapid is one of the few main party leaders who does not come to the Channel 12 studio for its stream of interviews with party leaders. Also absent are the Joint List’s Ayman Odeh and Ra’am’s Mansour Abbas. Odeh had to cancel for personal reasons, Channel 12 said; he did appear for an interview on Channel 13.