Channel 10 senior correspondent on chareidi affairs Avishai Ben-Chaim is well known in Israel, particularly for his in depth coverage of the Shas party and Maran HaGaon HaRav Ovadia Yosef ZT”L over the years.
Ben-Chaim feels that Bayit Yehudi leader Naftali Bennett wishes to eliminate the position of Rishon L’Tzion, the Sephardi Chief Rabbi of Israel, referring to the joint bill sponsored by Bennett and Justice Minister Tzipi Livni. That bill was approved on Sunday 18 Shevat by the Ministerial Law Committee.
Ben-Chaim uses his Facebook page to attack Bennett, stating “For the sake of historic accuracy Bennett’s plan regarding the Chief Rabbinate of Israel is not to eliminate the Chief Rabbis of Israel, but to eliminate the 300-year-old historic agency of the Rishon L’tzion, the Sephardi Chief Rabbi.”
Ben-Chaim says it is clear to him that Bennett wants to see Ashkenazi prevalence in the Rabbanut.
(YWN – Israel Desk, Jerusalem)
That would be good. A Rishon Le-Tzion not on the government payroll, meaning one chosen by gedolim instead of politicians, will be free to oppose the government. Rav Yosef didn’t get to be a real nuisance to the seculars until after he went off the state payroll.