(photo credit: Wikimedia Commons)
Jerusalem mayoral candidate Moshe Lion received a boost Tuesday, when powerful veteran Histadrut labor head Danny Bonfil endorsed him at a well-attended event at Lion’s campaign headquarters in Talpiot’s industrial zone.
Bonfil told the hundreds of activists in attendance that Lion had proven himself in the Jerusalem city council over the past five years and that he was the right man to unite all the city’s sectors.
“Moshe Lion is a manager, and that is what Jerusalem needs,” Bonfil said. “I support him, and I am sure he will be the next mayor.”
Lion thanked Bonfil for his support and promised to be “the bulldozer that the residents of this city need.”
In further good news for Lion, the state prosecutor’s office announced Tuesday at the recommendation of the police, it was closing a tax investigation of Lion that was connected to his work as an accountant and to a wider probe of Shas leader Arye Deri. Lion had been accused of funneling money to Deri through his accounting firm in return for Deri’s support for his unsuccessful 2013 mayoral run.
This was a small breakthrough after Lion received bad news Monday, when a Channel 2 poll predicted he would finish in fourth place in the October 30 mayoral election, behind unannounced United Torah Judaism Deputy Mayor Yossi Daitch, Hitorerut B’yerushalayim Councilman Ofer Berkovitch, and Jerusalem Affairs Minister Ze’ev Elkin, who were in a virtual three-way tie.
The poll predicted 23% for Daitch, 22% for Berkovitch, 21% for Elkin, 11% for Lion, six percent for MK Rachel Azaria, four percent for former city attorney Yossi Havilio, three percent for city councilman Haim Epstein, and one percent for former city official Avi Salman.
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The poll found that either Berkovitch or Elkin would beat Daitch in a run-off race that would be held in the likely event that no candidate obtains 40% of the vote in the first round of voting.
Elkin received an endorsement Tuesday from the head of the National Union of State Workers, Ariel Yaakobi. He has also been endorsed by the head of the Histadrut Labor Federation, Avi Nissenkorn.
Azaria’s Yerushalmim party chose its candidates for city council on Monday. The list includes Gilo neighborhood activist Nir Zoarez, Haredi (ultra-Orthodox) woman Pnina Pfeuffer, and socioeconomic activist Hila Ronen Debby.
“They are impressive doers who represent the unique mosaic that Jerusalem is,” Azaria said of the three candidates.
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