The next Israeli prime minister?

BAZ RATNER/AFP/Getty Images Embroiled in an ongoing corruption scandal, Israel Prime Minister Ehud Olmert is facing calls for his resignation. Today, Israeli Defense Minister Ehud Barak (above), who hails from a rival party, said it was time for Olmert to step aside: I do not think the prime minister can simultaneously run the government and ...

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594866_080528_barak2.jpg

BAZ RATNER/AFP/Getty Images

Embroiled in an ongoing corruption scandal, Israel Prime Minister Ehud Olmert is facing calls for his resignation. Today, Israeli Defense Minister Ehud Barak (above), who hails from a rival party, said it was time for Olmert to step aside:

I do not think the prime minister can simultaneously run the government and deal with his own personal affair."

BAZ RATNER/AFP/Getty Images

Embroiled in an ongoing corruption scandal, Israel Prime Minister Ehud Olmert is facing calls for his resignation. Today, Israeli Defense Minister Ehud Barak (above), who hails from a rival party, said it was time for Olmert to step aside:

I do not think the prime minister can simultaneously run the government and deal with his own personal affair.”

“Therefore, out of a sense of what is good for the country and in accordance with the proper norms, I think the prime minister must detach himself from the day-to-day running of the government,” Barak told a news conference.

Olmert continues to deny any wrongdoing, but a poll conducted by the Israeli newspaper Ha’aretz showed that 70 percent of Israelis think the prime minister is lying. It’s hard to imagine he can survive.

As I see it, since Olmert’s Kadima Party is already reaching outside of Israel for campaign funds, why not seek talent abroad as well? So, to help Kadima, here are some potential replacements — all of whom would likely enjoy greater popularity in Israel than Olmert.

1) Jimmy Carter

Pro: Ability to feed entire population peanuts in the event that rising food prices begin to hit home in Jerusalem

Con: Meetings with Hamas officials do not exactly provide great stump-speech material in Israel.

2) Eliot Spitzer

Pro: He’s probably not doing much else these days.

Con: If Olmert appears to have expensive habits, what would you call Client #9’s personal expenditures?

3) George Bush

Pro: Has looked into Olmert’s soul and knows he’s a good guy, plus increased Bar and Restaurant revenue from Israelis flocking to have a beer with W.

Con: With Bush’s domestic approval ratings comparable to those of Olmert, people might not notice the switch.

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