Rabbi Yosef happy over election results

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January 26, 2013 22:33
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Rabbi Ovadia Yosef, the 92 year old spiritual leader of the Sephardic-haredi Shas party, expressed his satisfaction with the results of last Tuesday’s elections during his weekly Torah lecture on the ultra-orthodox Kol Berama radio station on Saturday evening.

Addressing party activists who campaigned on behalf of Shas, Yosef said that they had “worked hard with all of their strength to strengthen the power of the Torah and helped to gain fifty thousand votes more” than in the 2009 Knesset elections. “They worked days and night so that our party would succeed,” he said.

Despite getting these extra votes, however, Shas did not increase its representation for the nineteenth Knesset, maintaining it’s current standing at eleven mandates. Shas obtained 331,800 votes totaling 8.75 percent of the total cast.

Yosef’s comments -while not addressing the challenges posed to Shas by the Koah L’hashpia party of popular outreach Rabbi Amnon Yitzchak and the Am Shalem movement of Shas renegade Rabbi Haim Amsalem- seemed to indicate the elder Rabbi’s relief at his party’s ability to weather the challenges of these two newcomers.

The two challengers to the dominance of Shas within the Sephardic community garnered a total of 1.94 percent of the vote.

Those who campaigned for Shas, Yosef stated, should “merit the blessings of a bountiful, long life [full of] respect, honor and wealth.”

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