Shas To Degel In Elad Mayoral Race: Anyone But Porush

Elad Mayor Sruli Porush

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It is the norm in the chareidi political arena, for the parties to be jockeying for position ahead of location elections nationwide. Sadly, all too often one chareidi party advances at the expense of another, as achdus is often something we can daven for, but in reality, things are far less sublime in the chareidi camp.

In the latest round of feeling out the appointment in the Elad race, Shas is now signaling to Degel Hatorah there is a possibility of the Sephardi Chareidi party supporting an Ashkenazi litvish candidate for the mayoral slot for as long as the incumbent, Sruli Porush of the Shlomei Emunim faction, is ousted from City Hall.

BeChadrei Chareidim reports that right hand of Shas chairman in Elad is Yosef Chaim Kalaf, who in the last elections tapped Tzuriel Krisfel. Porush however beat him at the polls.

Kalaf on Sunday, 20 Sivan, met with representatives of the chassidim in the city as well as persons from the litvish tzibur close to Yanki Kanievsky, a grandson who is extremely close to HaGaon HaRav Chaim Kanievsky Shlita.

It is reported that the surprise which emerged is Shas is theoretically willing to back a candidate from Degel Hatorah in the Elad race, for as long as Porush is not reelected to a second term.

Chadrei quotes a person who was there to hear the conversation with Kalaf, speaking on the basis of anonymity. The Shas position is the party will not made many demands for portfolios in the city council for as long as there is a guarantee that “Srulik Porush is out” [of City Hall].

The short Degel list includes Yitzchak Pindrus who serves in Jerusalem and Menachem Schwartz, Degel’s representative on the Petach Tikvah City Council.

There is an agreement between Degel and Shlomei Emunim which states that in the upcoming elections, a Degel candidate will run for the Elad mayoral slot, and the chassidic faction will back that candidacy. Shas is now trying to save face and close a deal with Degel nonetheless as it is most interested in ousting Porush, who Shas feels stole the Sephardi municipality despite requests from Maran HaGaon HaRav Ovadia Yosef ZT”L ZY”A at the time, not to run in the election in Elad and to “leave this city to the Sephardim”.

However Yisrael Porush’s father, Deputy Education Minister Meir Porush, and the young mayor’s late grandfather, R’ Menachem Porush Z”L, used their extensive political clout to get him into the slot despite Shas’ and Maran’s objections. It appears Shas is now retaliating.

(YWN Israel Desk – Jerusalem)