Barbour to meet with Netanyahu in Israel

Mississippi Gov. Haley Barbour (R) will visit Israel on Saturday, less than a week after Mike Huckabee announced a similar trip.

Barbour is scheduled to leave Saturday and will be in Israel until Wednesday of next week.

According to the Republican Jewish Coalition, which is hosting the possible 2012 presidential candidate, Barbour will meet with senior Israeli leaders, including Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. He will also deliver a "major address" at the Herzliya Conference on the last day of his trip.

Netanyahu has recently met with both former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney (R) and ex-Arkansas Gov. Huckabee, both of whom have shown interest in running for president in 2012.

Visiting Israel and meeting with Netanyahu in particular are indications that Romney, Huckabee and Barbour are working to bolster their foreign policy credentials.

"This visit will give Gov. Barbour the opportunity to learn more about the difficulties facing Israel, about the current thinking of Israel's political, military, and economic leaders, and about the Jewish state's exciting advancements in the development of new technologies," RJC Executive Director Matt Brooks said in a press release.

This is Barbour's second visit to Israel sponsored by the RJC. The first time was in 1994 when Barbour chaired the Republican National Committee.