'Corruption Threatens Democracy': Elizabeth Warren Slams Netanyahu After Indictment Decision

Presidential hopeful Elizabeth Warren says allegations against Netanyahu 'cut to the heart of a functioning democracy'

U.S. Senator Elizabeth Warren speaks at Plymouth State University in Plymouth, New Hampshire, U.S., February 23, 2019.
\ Brian Snyder/ REUTERS

WASHINGTON  Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Elizabeth Warren slammed Benjamin Netanyahu on Thursday, hours after Attorney General Avichai Mendelblit announced the prime minister will be indicted, pending a hearing, in three corruption cases.

Warren shared a CNN report on the latest legal developments on Twitter, writing: "First embracing right-wing extremism. Now manipulating a free press, accepting bribes, and trading government favors. The allegations against Prime Minister Netanyahu are serious and cut to the heart of a functioning democracy."

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The first part of her statement was a reference to Netanyahu's recent political dealings with the racist Otzma Yehudit party, which Amy Klobuchar, another senior Democratic lawmaker and presidential hopeful, also denounced earlier this week.

In another tweet as part of the same thread, Warren wrote: "Corruption — in Israel, in the US, or anywhere else — is a cancer that threatens democracy. We need to fight back. And we can start by having the courage to call it out wherever it occurs. Even among our allies. Especially here at home."

A situation in which two prominent presidential hopefuls comment on internal Israeli politics in less than a week is rare and highlights the growing criticism of Netanyahu within the Democratic Party.

On Thursday, Mendelblit announced his decision to indict Netanyahu for bribery, fraud and breach of trust in three separate cases, pending a hearing. Netanyahu reacted with a fiery speech accusing the attorney general of bowing to pressure from the media and left-wingers.