More In-Fighting in Jerusalem Chareidi Party


degDespite marathon meetings before Yom Kippur between leaders of the Degel Hatorah and Agudas Yisrael factions of Yahadut Hatorah, the issues pertaining to the Degel lineup in the Jerusalem municipal election remain unresolved.

Degel feels that due to the change in Jerusalem demographics over recent years resulting in the increase in the litvish community, the combined list must be 60:40 favoring Degel, not Agudah. Degel wants a senior post in the next city administration, such a planning and building, as well as the next slot on the joint ticket. Agudah remains unwilling to hand over that portfolio, adding if Yahadut Hatorah receives three deputy mayoral posts, two of them will go to the chassidish and not the litvish faction.

Agudah officials add that changing the internal agreement in the capital will compel the same in other areas and this will not work in Degel’s favor. The sides will have to meet again in the coming days if they plant to agree on a joint list. As is the case in Knesset, the joint list is not a l’chatchila situation but one agreed to by the sides amid a realization running together earns them at least one additional mandate, if not more. The joint list has never resulted in an ideal situation as the factions frequently accuse the other of one infraction or another and it now remains to be seen if the join list will remain unified in the upcoming Jerusalem race.

Degel officials explain that in other cities they are aware that Agudas Yisrael has a majority, and they honor this reality, now expecting the same in Yerushalayim where the litvish community is a majority.

(YWN – Israel Desk, Jerusalem)


  1. It’s a function of having two (or more) political parties being forced to run as a single party. It’s common in Israel. In an American-style system, there would be primaries to resolve the matter, but in Israel the way allied but distinct parties settle things is through negotiations.

  2. In the words of the infamous Hillary Clinton, “What difference does it make?” The important thing is that the Charedim get in. Does it matter if the Chasidish or the Litvish have more portfolios??? Grow up and get a life! #1, you’re right. If we have no achdus, how can we expect anything?!?

  3. akuperma, actually the Agudah and Degel are, I think, the only parties not to have a primary.
    Also keep in mind, at least with Shas, that they ship people over to cities and then have them run for office, even though they have no idea of the needs of the people.

  4. Not having primaries is not limited to frum parties – small parties frequently don’t have open parties. You have party leaders (or “bosses” if you don’t like them) picking slates. In a small party, a primary would result in the danger of an outside faction taking over the party. Under proportional reprsentation, “achdus” is punished in situations where the parties will both clear the threshold for election since a combined list will “turn off” some voters who would have voted for a single list.

  5. There is lots of money and grants available in all the political realms. Remember the money boss is the BOSS. By getting more Litvish seats, the $$$$ is in their hands, do you wonder why AGUDAH is fighting this tooth and nail?

    Same with elections veruses Shas, money, jobs and appointments is the POWERBASE. Primaries these parties will never organize since then Shitas and Hadracha will shift. Since the Edah are not usually voters, the many NEW CHARIDIM will have a larger than wanted say.