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NU MKs Differ on Path to Unity

MKs Eldad and Ben Ari of National Union think joining Jewish Home's primaries makes sense. The other two do not.
By Gil Ronen
First Publish: 2/19/2012, 6:02 PM

MK Ben Ari
MK Ben Ari
Flash 90

National Union MKs Aryeh Eldad and Michael Ben Ari have welcomed a call from the sister religious Zionist party, Jewish Home, to join its census and primaries. Only through a single, open census within the religious Zionist camp can unification be realized, the two said Sunday.

"It is no secret that there are disagreements" within the religious Zionist camp, and it is time to work them out and let the public decide them, they added in a joint press release. "Only a democratic census and primaries will ensure unity and true representation."

Also on Sunday, the Chairman of the Jewish Home's Elections Committee, Rabbi Dr. Daniel Tropper, who is running the census, called on the other two National Union MKs, Yaakov Katz and Uri Ariel, to join the census.

"Dear and respected Knesset Members," he stated, "I wish to congratulate you on your call for a joint Knesset list representing the entire religious Zionist camp.  As the chairman of Elections Committee of religious Zionism, the NRP and the Jewish Home faction, I would like to invite the National Union and any other element in religious Zionism truly interested in unity to join this census."

MKs Katz and Ariel sent an email message Thursday to tens of thousands of addressees, in which they laid out their proposal for a formula that would allow the Jewish Home and the National Union to run for the next Knesset together.

The formula would allow each party to decide how it chooses to elect its own representatives in the joint list. MK Katz has come out against the primaries system, calling it corrupt and saying that rabbis who are "elevated above the people" should select leaders.