Past Politician, Pained Parent, Prized Performer Prepare to Pursue Prominent Post of Presidency
Israel on Wednesday will finalize its list of presidential candidates as the nation prepares to hold elections for the highest – and mostly symbolic – office in the land in two weeks’ time. Any individual successful in securing the signatures of 10 parliament members by midnight will be allowed to run in the June 2 contest, which will be decided by a secret ballot vote among Israel’s 120 MPs. Despite the tight deadline, the only candidate with a real shot at winning who has officially announced his candidacy as of Wednesday noon is current Jewish Agency Chairman and former Labor party chief Isaac Herzog, son of former President Chaim Herzog. Herzog may face stiff competition from Miriam Peretz, thought to be in the running as well. Peretz is a bereaved mother of two Israeli soldiers killed in combat who has in recent years become a widely respected public speaker and activist, advocating unity and gap-bridging amid a divided Israeli public. The third leading candidate appears to be Yehoram Gaon, the renowned 81-year-old singer and entertainer.