Newly re-elected Beit Shemesh Mayor Moshe Abutbul told an interviewer from Channel 10 that the city does not have homosexuals among its residents. “We don't have things like that... thank G-d, this city is holy and pure...”
When asked what should be done about the homosexuals, Abutbul answered, “I don't know, there is the Health Ministry, there are the police...”
There is tension in Beit Shemesh between hareidi residents and non-hareidim. Hareidi-religious politicians in the city have largely pushed for new housing for young hareidi families, while other residents of city want to see new housing for other groups, as well, along with more entertainment venues and other attractions, and an end to the extremist hareidi violence that has plagued some parts of the city.
Some residents would like the city split into two.
The religious-Zionist Bayit Yehudi has demanded that Attorney General Yehuda Weinstein appeal the results of the elections that were recently held at Beit Shemesh, in order to bring about new elections in the city.
“As the media reported, numerous mishaps and serious suspicions of irregularities have been exposed regarding the elections at Beit Shemesh,” wrote Bayit Yehudi faction chairwoman Ayelet Shaked. “Because of this, and following a conversation with Bayit Yehudi Chairman, Minister Naftali Bennett, I am asking you to recommend...to the Attorney General to file an appeal for return elections in the city.”
"I wish to stress that we are not talking about scattered accusations,” Shaked insisted. “A system has been discovered; a mechanism of forgery was exposed. It is possible that all the things that were exposed are just the tip of the iceberg, and that the problem is much bigger. In order to prevent abuse of democracy and the repetition of grave deeds in the future, the Israel legal system must act in a determined and deterrent way.”