Labor endorses Barkat for Jerusalem mayor

Yacimovich tells Labor voters that Lion is the messenger of "corrupt people" who lack integrity.

By
September 25, 2013 18:51
Jerusalem Mayor Nir Barkat

Jerusalem Mayor Nir Barkat 311. (photo credit: Marc Israel Sellem)

 
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Opposition leader Shelly Yacimovich (Labor) endorsed Jerusalem Mayor Nir Barkat for reelection Wednesday, saying his challenger, Likud Beytenu candidate Moshe Lion, was backed by “corrupt people.”

Yacimovich sent Labor members a letter cosigned by the party’s secretary-general, MK Hilik Bar, and by Yokne’am Mayor Simon Alfassi, who heads its election committee, asking them to vote for the joint Labor-Meretz city council list and for Barkat for mayor.

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“We ask you to show support for Nir Barkat for a second term as mayor, and also ask you to vote for him,” the letter said.

“We don’t need to point out that we do not see eye-to-eye on every topic, but there is no doubt he is a good mayor and is much better than the person running against him.”

Labor’s endorsement came after Meretz’s candidate for mayor, Pepe Alalu, backed out of the race Wednesday so that, according to a Meretz spokesman, “the haredim and Lion don’t have a chance to win.”

“A haredi and extreme rightwing takeover of Jerusalem would be a disaster for the State of Israel,” the spokesman explained.

A poll sponsored by the joint Labor-Meretz council list found that if the parties were to split the non-haredi vote with Barkat, Lion would have a good chance of being elected.



Earlier this week, haredi parties announced they would back Lion.

The Labor leadership wrote that “the importance of reelecting [Barkat] is even greater since he’s running against Moshe Lion, the personal messenger of [Yisrael Beytenu leader Avigdor] Liberman, who is backed by people who are far from having integrity, to say the least.”

Lion’s campaign responded by saying the cat was “out of the bag,” adding that Barkat’s “attempt to dress up as a Likudnik and a member of the nationalist camp failed.”

“Yacimovich and Alalu’s support for Barkat shows that the choice is clear,” the response continued. “Barkat is the candidate of the Left and Moshe Lion is the nationalist candidate.”Opposition leader Shelly Yacimovich (Labor) endorsed Jerusalem Mayor Nir Barkat for reelection Wednesday, saying his challenger, Likud Beytenu candidate Moshe Lion, was backed by “corrupt people.”

Yacimovich sent Labor members a letter cosigned by the party’s secretary-general, MK Hilik Bar, and by Yokne’am Mayor Simon Alfassi, who heads its election committee, asking them to vote for the joint Labor-Meretz city council list and for Barkat for mayor.

“We ask you to show support for Nir Barkat for a second term as mayor, and also ask you to vote for him,” the letter said.

“We don’t need to point out that we do not see eye-to-eye on every topic, but there is no doubt he is a good mayor and is much better than the person running against him.”

Labor’s endorsement came after Meretz’s candidate for mayor, Pepe Alalu, backed out of the race Wednesday so that, according to a Meretz spokesman, “the haredim and Lion don’t have a chance to win.”

“A haredi and extreme rightwing takeover of Jerusalem would be a disaster for the State of Israel,” the spokesman explained.

A poll sponsored by the joint Labor-Meretz council list found that if the parties were to split the non-haredi vote with Barkat, Lion would have a good chance of being elected.

Earlier this week, haredi parties announced they would back Lion.

The Labor leadership wrote that “the importance of reelecting [Barkat] is even greater since he’s running against Moshe Lion, the personal messenger of [Yisrael Beytenu leader Avigdor] Liberman, who is backed by people who are far from having integrity, to say the least.”

Lion’s campaign responded by saying the cat was “out of the bag,” adding that Barkat’s “attempt to dress up as a Likudnik and a member of the nationalist camp failed.”

“Yacimovich and Alalu’s support for Barkat shows that the choice is clear,” the response continued. “Barkat is the candidate of the Left and Moshe Lion is the nationalist candidate.”

• By LAHAV HARKOV NIR BARKAT (Marc Israel Sellem/The Jerusalem Post) The medical condition of Rabbi Ovadia Yosef, spiritual leader of the Shas movement, remained largely unchanged over Simhat Torah/Shmini Atzeret and is still defined as serious to very serious, but stable.

Prof. Dan Gilon, one of the rabbi’s doctors, said in a statement to the media that there was no significant change during the holiday in Yosef’s condition.

“With the combination of illnesses the rabbi is suffering from, and his age, there is always a danger in the background, [but] at the moment I don’t see anything immediate,” Gilon said.

Yosef’s four sons, Avraham, Yitzhak, David and Moshe, were all by his side at Hadassah University Medical Center in Jerusalem’s Ein Kerem on Thursday, along with Shas party chairman Arye Deri and former chairman MK Eli Yishai.

Yosef, 93, remains sedated and on a respirator.

On Wednesday afternoon, Yosef’s team of doctors decided to replace his temporary pace maker with a new temporary device instead of fitting a permanent pace maker which involves a more complicated procedure.

The new device was successfully installed.

Rabbi David Yosef said that his father’s condition would not improve quickly.

“This is not a matter of a few days, it will take time and we are full of hope what he will recover,” he was quoted as saying on Yosef’s official Facebook page.

“The doctors say that there is a chance he will come out of this situation and will be able to return and to function.”

Leading rabbis, hassidic leaders and haredi and religious communities around the country have continued to pray for Yosef’s recovery.

And some proposals for increasing divine healing for the rabbi have been made.

One proposal made by a Jerusalem-based rabbi is to declare to God a donation of two minutes of one’s life to Yosef and get one other person to do so as well.

Another proposal which has been suggested is to break one’s smartphone to induce greater divine mercy.

Rabbinical leaders in the haredi world have repeatedly denounced smartphones as devices which bring people to sin and have issued numerous bans on their use.

“Break the iPhone and save our master,” read a notice issued by a small haredi organization. “Our master” refers to Yosef.

“If you merited to break the unkosher device in your possession, you donated blood and oxygen to the life of our master,” the notice added.

Tens of thousands of people have been praying for the rabbi’s recovery, including Education Minister Shai Piron who joined the prayers for Yosef’s health on Tuesday night.

“Rabbi Ovadia Yosef made a breakthrough in the treatment of the stranger, the orphan and the widow,” Piron said. “As a bold adjudicator he sought to benefit the weaker sectors of society, making a name for himself as one of the greatest adjudicators of all times.”

Piron said he wishes Ovadia Yosef a full recovery and “many more years of rich Torah rulings.”

Danielle Ziri contributed to this report.

• By JEREMY SHARON OVADIA YOSEF (Marc Israel Sellem/The Jerusalem Post) Rabbi Ovadia Yosef remains in serious condition No change in medical status as 93-year-old Shas founder and spiritual leader remains sedated and on a respirator over holiday

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