In what is being called historic unity, an agreement was signed between Degel Hatorah and Agudas Yisroel on Wednesday afternoon, January 16, 2019, by which will divide the first ten slots on the ticket evenly between the parties.
In a joint statement released to the media, the parties said “This is the result of a historic unity between the factions that managed to reach an agreement between them in advance, a few months before the official date for submission of lists to the Knesset, thanks to close and full cooperation between the representatives of the factions and the Moetzes.
MK Gafne said “This is an unprecedented historical process. We are the first party that has completed its internal deliberations and is embarking on the election of an equal agreement that gives great satisfaction our Gedolei Yisroel of today, and להבחל”ח Gedolim of the past. We are focusing on bringing as many voters as possible to the ballot box in order to deal with the challenges we face: “This is a historic agreement for Degel Hatorah in particular and United Torah Judaism in general.”
Deputy Minister of Health, MK Litzman said that UTJ is approaching the upcoming elections with full Achdus. We are witnessing a tremendous Kiddush Hashem, to be the first party in Israel to have come to an early conclusion on the order of the list. I am sure that this will increase our strength in the elections, and we will see great success”.
However, after learning the order decided upon by Agudas Yisroel, the Belzer representative in the Knesset, MK Yisrael Eichler, is likely to find himself without a job as he is last on the Agudas Yisroel list. The agreement is approved by the lay leaders and the Moetzas Gedolei Yisroel of both parties.
According to Kikar Shabbos News, the order of Agudah will be Yaakov Litzman (Gur), Meir Porush (Shlomei Emunim), Yanki Tessler (Vishnitz), and Yisrael Eichler (Belz).
While representatives of Belz prefer not to comment at present, the fact remains that Belz is the second largest chassidus, significantly larger than Vishnitz, leading to the question why Tessler, who is a young rookie MK, replacing Menachem Eliezer Moses who retired, is listed before Belz. Tessler was an aide to Deputy Minister Litzman while Eichler served a partial tenure in the 16th and 18th Knesset and then a full term in the 19th and the current 20th.
(YWN Israel Desk – Jerusalem)