Member of Knesset Meir Sheetrit of the Hatnua Party says he lost the runoff presidential election in Knesset earlier this year because of a deal Interior Minister Gideon Sa'ar made with haredim – and that deal involved Saar closing the Tel Aviv shops on Shabbat in exchange for haredim switching their support from Sheetrit to Reuven Rivlin, Sa’ar’s old buddy and his personal choice for president, and for future haredi backing for Sa’ar if he tries to become prime minister.
Above: Gideon Sa'ar
Likud Interior Minister Allegedly Closed TA Supermarkets On Shabbat In Exchange For Haredi Votes For Presidential Candidate
Shmarya Rosenberg • FailedMessiah.com
According to a new report in Ha’aretz, we now may know why Interior Minister Gideon Sa’ar of the Likud Party suddenly moved to close Tel Aviv supermarkets and grocery stores for Shabbat, and the reason has nothing to do with what many say as Sa’ar’s facile claims about the religious-secular status quo.
Member of Knesset Meir Sheetrit of the Hatnua Party says he lost the runoff presidential election in Knesset earlier this year because of a deal Sa'ar made with haredim – and that deal involved Saar closing the Tel Aviv shops on Shabbat in exchange for haredim switching their support from Sheetrit to senior Likud Party member Reuven Rivlin, Sa’ar’s old buddy and his personal choice for president, and for future haredi backing for Sa’ar if he tries to become prime minister.
In other words, Sa’ar allegedly sold his influence and sold out the vast majority of Tel Avivians in the process in exchange for getting his buddy elected president and himself possibly installed as prime minister in the future.
“Everyone must ask themselves why [the Sefardi haredi] Shas [Party] changed its vote at the last minute. My colleagues in Likud told me about the political deal Sa’ar closed with the Haredi parties that included the closing of the grocery stores. There was a break of an hour in the vote between the first round and the second round, and then there was a meeting between Sa’ar [who backed Rivlin] and Shas. [If the second round had been held immediately after the first round] the results of the election would have been completely different,” Sheetrit reportedly said today.
Reuven Ladiansky, a member of the Tel Aviv City Council from the Green Revolution Party, reportedly said he asked State Comptroller Joseph Shapira to investigate what he called the allegations of buying power in return for forbidden political favors at the expense of the public.
Kobi Cohen, CEO of the Super Yuda chain of supermarkets, told Ha’aretz he had heard several times about the alleged backroom deal made at his company’s expense.
“The sad thing is how Gideon Sa’ar finds himself as a Tel Avivian selling out all the Tel Avivians for such deals. If this really happened it is hard to accept the feeling that personal freedom was sold out in all sorts of political deals in the halls of the Knesset,” Cohen reportedly said.
Sa’ar's office denies the deal took place.
“The things MK Sheetrit said on Channel 10's morning television program are lies and lack all basis in fact. Worse, MK Sheetrit neglected to say that his associate, Dudi Weissman, CEO of the [24/7] am:pm chain is a main business client of Sheetrit's wife Ruti…Minister Sa'ar realized, when making a decision about the law involving closure of shops on Shabbat, that powerful economic elements are at play here and have to be dealt with firmly…The embarrassing comments by MK Sheetrit just go to show how well the Knesset did in selecting a worthy president,” Sa’ar’s office reportedly said in statement.
In response, Sheetrit reportedly called Sa’ar’s comments “slanderous.”
"The aggressive and slanderous comments made by Sa'ar prove how true the things [I said] are. I do not defend any businessmen in this country, and just brought up the stores that are open on Shabbat as an issue that Sa'ar used to please the haredim. I didn't invent these things; they were told to me by knowledgeable Likud MKs,” Sheetrit said.