Itamar Ben-Gvir in Shuk Machane Yehuda on March 24, 2019.
(photo credit: MATANEL RAHAMIM)
Otzma Yehudit took its petition to bump candidate Itamar Ben-Gvir to fifth place on the Union of Right-Wing Parties’ list to the High Court of Justice.
“After the Supreme Court, in a shameful decision, decided to disqualify my friend Dr. [Michael] Ben-Ari, I hope that it will do justice and slightly fix the injustice caused to Otzma voters and allow my promotion and that of an additional Otzma representative to the original spots reserved for our representatives,” Ben-Gvir said on Monday.
When URP submitted its list, Otzma Yehudit representatives former MK Ben-Ari and Ben-Gvir were put in fifth and eighth place, respectively.
However, the High Court banned Ben-Ari from running, on grounds of racist incitement. This was the first time an individual candidate, as opposed to an entire list, was disqualified from an election.
The ruling bumped Ben-Gvir up to seventh place, but he petitioned the Central Elections Committee to change the list so he can move into fifth and Otzma representative Yitzhak Wasserlauf can be in eighth, even though the deadline to submit lists for the election passed. Central Elections Committee chairman Justice Hanan Melcer rejected the request on Sunday.
In the petition, Ben-Gvir wrote that the decision to disqualify Ben-Ari significantly harmed Otzma specifically, as well as URP in general, in that it hurt the chances of the party having significant representation in the next Knesset.
Ben-Gvir said “the legal system is stressed and does not want to let Otzma representatives into the Knesset,” but believes he thinks he will get in from seventh place, anyway.
“The demand to move me up comes from the will of the voters and wanting to bring in another representative of Otzma,” he explained.
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