Zionist Union/Labor Party co-leader Yitzhak Herzog paid a visit to the Western Wall (Kotel) on Sunday. Herzog read several portions of Psalms (Tehillim), and placed a note in one of the cracks of the venerated wall – presumably asking G-d for assistance in Tuesday's elections. Before arriving at the Kotel, Herzog visited the graves of his grandparents – Rabbi Yitzhak Isaac Herzog, Israel's first Chief Ashkenazic Rabbi, and his wife, Sarah.
At a photo-op upon leaving the holy site, Herzog said that he would ensure that the Kotel remained in Israeli hands. “My family has been tied with strong bonds with Jerusalem for generations. I am among those who daily pray 'And to Jerusalem Your city, return with mercy,” part of the Shemona Esreh (18 Benedictions) that are recited by observant Jews three times a day. “I will be sure to ensure the strength and stability of Jerusalem and its residents with actions, not just words, more than any other leader,” he said.
In recent days, Herzog has taken great pains to emphasize his family's traditions. In publications distributed on Shabbat in synagogues around the country, Herzog emphasized his descent from the Chief Rabbi's family, and proclaimed that he and his family has always been “traditional.”
Speaking on Kol Israel Radio Sunday afternoon, Economy Minister and Jewish Home leader Naftali Bennett said that Herzog's visit to the Kotel was “very interesting. It's moving that a man who would give up the Kotel to the Arabs would visit it to pray. Herzog, after all, was a supporter of former Prime Minister Ehud Barak's plan to give the entire Old City to Yasser Arafat over a decade ago.”