'Katz may have broken law in campaign tactics'

State Comptroller Yosef Shapira says he had warned of possible illegal behavior in Likud primary elections.

By GIL STERN STERN HOFFMAN
November 25, 2012 17:58
1 minute read.
State Comptroller Joseph Shapira

State Comptroller Joseph Shapira 370. (photo credit: Marc Israel Sellem)

 
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State Comptroller Yosef Shapira announced Sunday that he had warned of possible illegal behavior regarding Likud primary elections by Likud MK and Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI) union head Haim Katz in a letter he sent last week to the head of the Electoral Commission, Justice Elyakim Rubinstein, and Attorney-General Yehuda Weinstein.

According to the state comptroller’s spokesperson, Shapira’s letter indicated that use of IAI’s facilities, computers and other resources for political purposes, in particular during work hours, could be illegal.

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The letter also noted that distracting employees from their jobs during work hours could hurt the corporation’s efficiency and profitability, which is even more problematic since IAI gets considerable public funding.

Shapira sent the letter in response to a complaint filed by one of IAI’s workers, Amir Hermoni. Shapira wrote that his office had received complaints in the past about Katz’s behavior, which added credibility to the current suspicions against him.

Despite all of the above, Shapira emphasized that he had brought the allegations to Rubinstein and Weinstein’s attention as only they could take direct action against Katz, if necessary.

Katz’s associates responded that IAI workers do not vote during work hours. They said people who work to defend the country’s skies should be given the benefit of the doubt as law-abiding citizens.

“IAI workers use their democratic right to vote according to the law,” Katz said. “Such serial complaints are issued every four years when the Likud has elections, and they are always rejected.



“My support in the public is the result of my socioeconomic legislation over the past four years,” he added Voting slips given to IAI workers indicated that Katz had made a political deal with Likud candidate Moshe Feiglin, Vice Premier Silvan Shalom and Transportation Minister Yisrael Katz.

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