The matter of the order on the Agudas Yisrael list of the combined Yahadut Hatorah list in the upcoming election remains a point of controversy, as Belz insists it should be ahead of Vishnitz for two reasons; (1) Belz is a significantly larger chassidus and (2) Yisrael Eichler is a Knesset veteran as opposed to Yanki Tessler, the Vishnitz candidate, who has never served in Knesset.
In the last election the order was Yaakov Litzman (Gerre), Meir Porush (Shlomei Emunim), Menachem Eliezer Moses (Vishnitz) and Yisrael Eichler (Belz). The machlokes between Belz and Vishnitz on this matter is not new, as Belz has always maintained that due to its significant larger size, it should be ahead of Vishnitz on the lineup.
However, now, as the Vishnitzer Rebbe Shlita reportedly decided to instruct Moses to step down and retire from Knesset, replacing him with Yaakov Tessler, who is a former advisor to Deputy Health Minister Litzman, Belz views the situation as opportune to correct this injustice. Hence, Belze wants Eichler to receive the third slot on the Agudas Yisrael list, which is the sixth slot on the combined list with Degel Hatorah, stating that Eichler, a seasoned veteran, should come before Tessler, the rookie.
Representatives of Vishnitz and Belz have been working to resolve the matter, with Kikar Shabbos News reporting Eichler and Binyamin Breish are working on behalf of Belz while the secretary of the Agudas Yisrael Moetzas Gedolei Torah Rav Yaakov Waltzer is working with Rav Bentzion Stenger and Yaakov Tessler of Vishnitz to reach a solution. It is hoped that with Waltzer mediating between the sides, a mutually agreeable solution will be reached.
Kikar adds that persons involved in the situation are signaling it appears Vishnitz will agree to step aside and give the third Agudas Yisrael slot to Eichler in the coming election for the 21st Knesset, and this will change back in the election that follows, for the 22nd Knesset.
(YWN Israel Desk – Jerusalem)