MK Eitan Cabel (Zionist Union) called party chair Isaac Herzog "passe" and called himself "a true leader that rose from the bottom" in an accidental Facebook post Thursday morning.
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Cabel is considered one of Herzog's leading supporters amid the criminal investigation into the party leader's alleged reception of unlawful campaign donations, failure to report said donations and providing a false statement during the 2013 Labor Party primary campaign.
The post includes a picture of Herzog and Cabel under a portrait of former Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin with a note reading: "Three leaders are pictured, one passe, one a man of vision and one of a true leader that rose from the bottom. Since the man of vision left us too soon, we're with you Eitan all the way."
Cabel told Haaretz that he did not write the post, saying that "I have a good opinion of myself but not like that." Cabel said he knows who wrote the post, adding that the post has since been erased and the writer has apologized. Cabel, however, did not address the post's criticism against Herzog.
"This is a major screw up that may destroy relations between Cabal and Herzog," said a veteran activist who saw the post. "It looks like a post that was ordered by Cabal and was supposed to go up anonymously, but someone in his office messed up. If it indeed turns out that Cabal is pretending outwardly to be Herzog's closest ally, but behind the scenes he's working against him full force, Herzog has a big problem." Cabal, as stated, rejected such an analysis.
In recent weeks, since the story broke of allegations against Herzog, Cabal has stood by and supported his party leader. He also formally announced that he will only run for leadership in party elections if Herzog backs out.
Meanwhile, although a date for the primaries has not been officially announced, MKs Shelly Yacimovich, Amir Peretz and Arel Margalit have begun to test the waters for a run against Herzog. Margalit even opened an official campaign with controversial statements, challenging the leadership of the current chairman. Yacimovich and Peretz held large support rallies last week to signal their intentions.