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January 21, 2013

At Last Minute, Haredi Pols Try To Woo Working Haredim To Prevent Hemorrhage Of Votes

UTJ logo Shas logoHaredi politicians are reportedly working hard – and at last minute – to woo the votes of a haredi group they had previously intentionally neglected: haredim who work for a living, attend college, and/or serve in the IDF.

 

At Last Minute, Haredi Pols Try To Woo Working Haredim To Prevent Hemorrhage Of Votes
Shmarya Rosenberg • FailedMessiah.com

Haredi politicians are reportedly working hard – and at last minute – to woo the votes of a haredi group they had previously intentionally neglected: haredim who work for a living, attend college, and/or serve in the IDF.

Called the "new haredim,” the group includes ba’al teshuvas, life-long haredim, Sefardim and Ashkenazim. A new survey shows that this segment of the haredi population has a very high rate of dissatisfaction with haredi parties and their leaders, and according to Ha'aretz those political leaders now fear the vote of those new haredim will go elsewhere as a result.

The head of the Tov movement, Rabbi Chanoch Verdiger, which aims to represent these new haredim told the media earlier this week that Tov would mount a Knesset list in the next national elections – meaning Shas and United Torah Judaism, the twho old line haredi parties, will have what could be formidable competition.

The Shas breakaway Am Shalem party recently opened a special campaign headquarters to target the new haredim, focusing on its founder Rabbi Haim Amsallem’s policies that encourage professional training and work.

Several other parties, from the hard right Otzma Leyisrael, the right wing Zionist Orthodox Habayit Hayehudi, and Rabbi Amnon Yitzhak's Hakoach Lehashpaia all are believed to be significant draws for these disaffected haredi voters, as well.

The heads of the Shas and UTJ are working with increasing feverishness to keep the new haredim voters within the traditional haredi political fold for this election or, if that is not possible, to dissuade them from voting at all.

UTJ Knesset members Moshe Gafni and Uri Maklev recently held rallies and parlor meetings for groups of haredim who work and who question whether they would continue to vote for UTJ – especially in light of statements made by other UTJ leaders against those haredim who have chosen to work rather than study full time, or who have agreed to serve in the military.

In an interview with the Haredi newspaper Mishpacha, Shas leader Arye Deri spoke of the integration of the new Haredim into ultra-Orthodox society.

Shas Party heads had what is being called “intensive negotiations” with the Tov movement, to try to get Tov to endorse Shas for this election cycle.

The negotiations reportedly failed when Shas refused to approve an agreement that included language that encouraged haredim to work and to study for academic degrees.

A Geocartography Knowledge Group survey recently commissioned by Tov found that 41% of haredim believe haredi families headed by those who work are discriminated against by the haredi school system – i.e., their children are discriminated against by the haredi teachers and administrators.

UTJ and Shas also face a threat of sorts from their right flank in the call by Satmar and other anti-Zionist groups for haredim to boycott the national elections.

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To quote the article, "A new survey shows that this segment of the haredi population has a very high rate of dissatisfaction haredi parties and their leaders, and according to Ha'aretz those political leaders now fear the vote of those new haredim will go elsewhere as a result."

The fact that this group of enlightened Haredim "has a very high rate of dissatisfaction (with) haredi parties and their leaders" shows there is a price to pay for marginalizing women, for discouraging Haredim to work and for making meaningless proclamations and fatwas whenever a rabbi's mood move him to do so. For once, a group of Haredim emerge who can use their own common sense and good critical judgment!! There is hope yet!!

haredim who work for a living, attend college, and/or serve in the IDF.

So that makes altogether three votes?

interesting i saw a poll that 65% of chabad in israel dont vote for aguda or shas, but other party's.

I am kinda suspicious of the concept of New Haredim.

They are simply very religious Da'atim, particularly ba'alei tshuvot. Very few of the core Haredim would move to this "New Haredi" category.

The headline to this story employs the phrase "Working Haredim"; surely that is an oxymoron?

"A new survey shows that this segment of the haredi population has a very high rate of dissatisfaction haredi parties and their leaders"

Shmarya, if you want other publications to use your pieces, you need to start proofreading them properly, as I've pointed out before.

Shmarya, if you want other publications to use your pieces, you need to start proofreading them properly, as I've pointed out before.

Posted by: Dovid | January 22, 2013 at 01:07 PM

Lets see. I write for a half dozen important Jewish publications and the Daily Beast.

I've been quoted and cited in hundreds of newspapers, profiled in several including the NY Times, profiled ob NY 1, and used as an on-air expert by CNBC.

But you're most definitely correct. If I don't proofread myself more carefully, no one will ever publish me.

The discussions allegedly unsuccessful when Shas rejected to accept an contract that involved terminology that motivated haredim to work and to study for educational levels.

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