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Washington unsure of the ripple effects of Netanyahus removal

As Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu approaches what may be the end of his leadership, U.S. lawmakers and interest groups alike are trying to figure out what this change could signal for the United States, the Washington Post reports.

Why it matters: The U.S.-Israel relationship has become more divisive with recent events in Gaza as well as ongoing criticism from some Democrats over Netanyahu’s hard-right policies.

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  • Naftali Bennett, another hard right figure, is expected replace Netanyahu. According to the Post, Bennett has indicated that his goal would be to unify politics.

They are saying this:

  • “The United States is a strong partner with Israel, but it’s been facing previously unheard-of difficulties in the last five-years,” Rep. Steve Cohen, D-Tenn., stated in a statement.

  • “From our standpoint, it’s not about an person, it’s about the relationship,” Sen. Lindsey Graham of South Carolina told reporters.

  • “Bibi Netanyahu made a decision to try to create and exploit partisan division about Israel in the United States,” Rep. Andy Levin (D-Mich.) told the paper. “This was a horrible error because support for Israel has to be bipartisan.”

  • Levin said, “He’s been at power, he clung to power. He’s machinated for all these years to stay in power. And he is an ethno-nationalist.”

  • Shira Efron is an Israeli scholar who works at Rand Corp. and the Israel Policy Forum.

Go deeper: Israeli “change coalition” announces a new government that will oust Netanyahu .

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