Thursday, November 08, 2012

Special Election Update

By Shmuel Sackett

Everybody knows that Tuesday was "Election Day".

The thing that most people don't know, however, is that there was also a very serious election in Israel as well.

Yesterday was the day when the new Mafdal party – now called "Bayit Yehudi" (The Jewish Home) – held elections for their party chairman.

It was a classic choice between the old vs. the new.

Zevulun Orlev, the standard Religious Zionist, who has been on the political scene for as long as I can remember was challenged by Naftali Bennett, a new and exciting candidate.

Bennett was born to USA olim from San Francisco, was a super combat soldier in Israel's elite fighting unit and is famous for being one of Israel's bright guys who started a hi-tech company and sold it for tens of millions of dollars.

Yesterday – the day when close to 60 million people voted for Barack Obama – a little less than 24,000 members of Bayit Yehudi voted and chose the man who many refer to as "the Feiglin of the Mafdal".

Bennett is a breath of fresh air and will infuse the "knitted kippot" political scene with energy and hope.

I expect Bennett's party to rise in the polls and receive many more seats that they currently have, which will have a negative impact on Likud.

The Likud today – especially after its merger with Avigdor Liberman's party – no longer appeals to the Religious Zionists.

There is of course, one thing, that can save Likud and bring back these votes.

If Moshe Feiglin receives a significant spot on the Likud Knesset "lineup", then – and only then - will Likud have a chance to convince these voters to come back.

Elections for the Likud Knesset "lineup" is scheduled for November 25th and we are working very hard and making sure that Moshe receives a strong and secure spot on that slate.
There is another reason why Moshe needs to be a key member of Likud's Knesset team.

Yesterday's victory for Obama means that Israel will face a very hostile USA president for the next 4 years.

Not only is Obama a lame duck president but he certainly wants "pay-back" for the support that Netanyahu's buddy, Sheldon Adelson, gave to his opponent.

Bibi will now face a very angry and unfriendly USA president that will make the last 4 years look like the Garden of Eden.

The pressure on Bibi will be enormous and the only way he will survive this pressure will be to have a strong Likud team in the Knesset who will give him the backbone he lacks.

Moshe could be the answer to that problem.

While this is not our main goal, it is an important by-product, and can make the difference to an Israel who bends or stands strong will a steel spine.

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