Trump to host Netanyahu at White House ahead of Israel’s elections

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(MANDEL NGAN/AFP/Getty Images)
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President Trump will meet with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu at the White House on Monday and host him for dinner the following night, the White House has announced.

Trump’s decision to host the prime minister so close to the Israeli elections will undoubtedly be viewed by some as an effort by Trump — who enjoys sky-high approval ratings in Israel — to tip the scales in Netanyahu’s favor. And Netanyahu, who has made his close relationship with Trump central to his re-election campaign, will undoubtedly play up his visit in the final campaign stretch.

White House press secretary Sarah Sanders announced on Wednesday that Trump would host Netanyahu for a working meeting on Monday, followed by a dinner on Tuesday.

Netanyahu was already scheduled to be in Washington next week for the annual conference of the American Israel Public Affairs Committee, or AIPAC, as will his primary opponent, retired Israeli Gen. Benny Gantz.

Aside from its nearness to Israel’s elections, the visit comes as Netanyahu faces multiple investigations into corruption. Israel’s attorney general announced in February he would indict Netanyahu pending a hearing. That isn’t expected to occur until well after next month’s election.

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