Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu refused to take the bait on Sunday when asked if he agreed with Republican presidential candidates that President Barack Obama is not pro-Israel enough.

He was asked on NBC’s “Meet the Press” about former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney’s recent comment that the Democratic president “threw Israel under the bus.”

“You are trying to throw me under the bus of American politics and, guess what, I’m not going to be thrown there,” Netanyahu joked.

The Israeli leader has had a strained relationship with Obama and in May criticized his vision of a Palestinian state based on 1967 borders as leaving Israel “indefensible.”

Some of the Republicans hoping to challenge Obama in the November 2012 election, including front-runners Romney and Texas Governor Rick Perry, have pounced on the issue and raced to proclaim their allegiance to the Jewish state.