Jewish Home activists back Shaked: 'Merger proved itself'

Jewish Home activists say that if not for Ayelet Shaked, 'there would have been no vestige left of a right-wing religious party.'

Arutz Sheva Staff ,

Ayelet Shaked
Ayelet Shaked
Flash 90

Top Jewish Home activists denounced the statements of Yamina leader Rabbi Rafi Peretz's wife, Michal, against Yamina Chairwoman Ayelet Shaked in the wake of the election results, a Walla! report wrote over the weekend.

Michal Peretz blamed Shaked for the fact that Yamina only received seven mandates rather than the nine or ten they were hoping for, according to a Walla! report on Thursday. "We have to think if next time it will be with us or without us but it's clear that it won't look the same and won't be the same setup if we go to elections again," Peretz said in a recording of a conversation obtained by Walla!.

"Everyone needs to draw conclusions but the question is if [Naftali Bennett and Shaked] know." Peretz added that if her husband had been the head of the party, the results would have been completely different. Peretz was opposed to Shaked's appointment as the leader of Yamina and initially said that if her husband wasn't the leader of the bloc, he wouldn't be in it at all.

The Jewish Home activists said that the merger with the New Right and the appointment of Shaked in first place not only proved itself but Jewish Home wouldn't have passed the threshold otherwise.

"It wasn't a resounding success but certainly not a failure," said Amiad Taub, Deputy Mayor of Modi'in. "Shaked worked hard in the elections and faced quite a few obstacles from our community. If we relinquish her now, we're relinquishing the possibility of growth and influence."

Taub noted that "Rabbi Rafi and Shaked worked together within the merger and the relative quiet among the public proved itself. The community loves her, she respects the community and she even brought in new voters. The unity she insisted on has proven itself. The loss was mainly in haredi-Religious Zionist areas."

Moshe Schwartz, a Jewish Home activist from Tel Aviv, said Shaked should remain in a united list with Jewish Home. "I think Rebbetzin Peretz is wrong," he said. "You could say we didn't meet expectations, but call it a failure? Why should we draw conclusions? Rabbi Rafi wouldn't have brought in the results if we hadn't merged with [the New Right] - we wouldn't have passed the threshold. There would have been no vestige left of a right-wing religious party."

Schwartz added that "it's unacceptable" that family members meddle in politics "but I'm not getting into that. I'm very surprised - the soldiers' votes haven't been counted yet and they're making decisions so quickly? This haste is out of place. Shaked successfully faced the attacks against her."

Attorney Racheli Zinkin, a top activist in Jewish Home's Netanya branch, explained that "to earn seven seats while she was attacked from all sides - the Likud, Noam, Otzma Yehudit - as well as the left - I think she did just fine. There are many people, at least around me, who voted Yamina only because Shaked was the head. Otherwise, they would have voted for Likud. If we ran separately, the two parties wouldn't have passed the threshold. The merger was necessary."