Bibi Started Campaigning for Reelection a Month Ago

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Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu picked a great time to call for an early election. He's practically been campaigning for a month now. 

Israel wasn't expected to vote for almost a year. The official reason Netanyahu gave for calling an early election on Tuesday was because he couldn't reach a reasonable budget. "I have decided, for the benefit of Israel, to hold elections now and as quickly as possible," he said at a press conference. And while he says it's for the benefit of Israel, it's hard not to see how it's the right time for Bibi, too.

He's been the center of international attention for the last month. As the AP notes, he's polling strong in his own country and there's no clear opponent for him. His frustrations with Iran's nuclear program led to him drawing an actual red line on a bomb at the U.N. conference in New York. (Though it may not have worked.) But he did the big American media tour in New York, and met with some high profile guests while he was there. He's had no trouble getting the one guy who 'snubbed' him during his trip to America, President Obama, on the phone. He even just shot down a mystery drone they found in their airspace. 

He's commanded international attention over his concerns for Israel's biggest threat, and he's got the leader of the Western world on speed dial. That's not a bad re-election platform. Netanyahu didn't give a specific time his country would go to the polls, but he said it would be within the next three months. 

This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.