Bennett: We'll Recommend Netanyahu for PM

Bayit Yehudi chairman says Rabbi Ben Dahan was fired because he fought for women whose husbands refused them halakhic divorces.

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Gil Ronen,

Naftali Bennett
Naftali Bennett
Israel news photo: Flash 90

Bayit Yehudi chairman Naftali Bennett said Saturday evening that his party will recommend to President Shimon Peres "in no uncertain terms" that he entrust Binyamin Netanyahu with the establishment of the next government.

"I know Netanyahu," Bennett said on a panel discussion on Channel 10. "He is the most suitable person, taking into account my criticism of him as well as my praise. He is the most appropriate person to run the government."

Bennett said that he thinks the next government "should spend more time on solving the housing problems, the economic situation, the middle class and equalizing the burden [on citizens], and spend less time on dealing with the Palestinian front and the diplomatic horizon."

Bennett fought back against accusations leveled at Orit Strook and Rabbi Eliyahu Ben Dahan, who are members of the Bayit Yehudi list for Knesset. He said that Rabbi Ben Dahan had been fired from his job as Director of the Rabbinical Courts because he fought for the rights of women who were refused a "get" (divorce decrees) by their husbands  and that Orit Strook fights for human rights. He admitted that Strook is the most far-right member of the list.

According to halakhah (Jewish law), only a husband can grant a divorce to his wife. If he refuses, there are halakhic sanctions that have the status of Knesset laws In Israel,  These include cancelling credit cards, not allowing him to exit the country and even incarceration. Rabbi Ben Dahan not only sent investigators to find husbands who had left Israel before sanctions could be administered, but also encouraged rabbinic judges to apply the sanctions more frequently.