Yisrael Beytenu recruits Anglo Knesset candidates

Application to join party's list posted on party's website in effort to expand English-speaking ranks, target youth.

November 6, 2012 17:55
1 minute read.
Foreign Minister Avigdor Liberman

Avigdor Liberman 370. (photo credit: Yossi Zamir)


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Yisrael Beytenu is working to attract Anglo candidates to the Knesset, posting the application to join the party’s list on its English-language website for the first time Tuesday.

The party has an open application process, where anyone who has been a Yisrael Beytenu member for at least five months and meets legal requirements according to Basic Law: The Knesset can send in an application.

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Relevant applicants, including current MKs, will be invited to an interview by the party’s selection committee later this month. Although Foreign Minister Avigdor Liberman is not an official member of the committee, he is thought to have a major influence on the list.

The selection committee’s choices for the 19th Knesset list are then brought to the Yisrael Beytenu Central Committee for authorization, before the December 6 deadline to submit party lists to the Central Elections Committee.

In 2009, Anglo candidate Danny Hershtal was put in the 21st slot on the Yisrael Beytenu list, but the party only had 15 seats in the 18th Knesset.

The party is continuing efforts to expand its Englishspeaking ranks while targeting younger voters.

“The English-speaking public in Israel is a natural community for Yisrael Beytenu as a party which places aliya and Zionism at the top of its list of priorities, as well as its long-standing commitment to political and electoral reform,” Yisrael Beytenu Deputy Director of Communications Ashley Perry explained.

According to Perry, the party does not only seek to court Anglo votes on the eve of elections, but consistently supports issues of concern to Englishspeakers in Israel.

Yisrael Beytenu posted a YouTube video on Monday showing its accomplishments in the past four years, making sure to include English subtitles for “thwarting Palestinian declaration of statehood” and “adding 3600 police, firefighters and prison wardens.” The clip reached nearly 2,000 hits in its first day online.

Meanwhile, Yisrael Beytenu’s Facebook page in Hebrew passed 20,000 “likes” last week, making it the most popular party on the social network.

Meretz is the second-most popular Israeli party on Facebook.

On Tuesday evening, the Yisrael Beytenu Central Committee officially approved the party’s joint list with Likud, following speeches by Foreign Minister Avigdor Liberman, Water and Energy Minister Uzi Landau and 19th Knesset candidate Yair Shamir.

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