With Obama Victory Looming, Israel Moves Up Elections
Netanyahu is taking advantage of his high approval ratings while they exist, preventing rivals from buttressing their platforms and seeking a mandate from voters that it's time to get even tougher on Iran. Seating a new government also will make it easier to pass an austerity budget for next year.
The current coalition government has failed to pass a budget this fall.
"I have therefore decided, for the benefit of Israel, to hold elections now and as quickly as possible," Netanyahu said.
In the U.S., Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney has aligned closely with Netanyahu's aggressive position on Iran. But President Barack Obama has refused to set a firm date for Iran to end its nuclear program before the U.S. would bring any action necessary to shut down the program. If Obama wins, Netanyahu could use the fresh government to apply new pressure on Obama.
Israel last held elections in Feb. 2009.
For more on Netanyahu, click here.
RELATED: How Will Boca Raton's Jews Vote?