Newly elected Meretz head Tamar Zandberg had egg on her face Sunday morning after she was caught telling a fib – denying that a former adviser to Education Minister Naftali Bennett had helped her on her campaign for the party chair election, and later being forced to admit that the adviser, Moshe Klughauft, indeed worked on the campaign.
Klughauft, a political strategist who worked with Bennett for years, revealed in an interview on Hadashot News Motzoei Shabbos that he had, for personal reasons, decided to change his political perspective, and approached Zandberg to work with her on her campaign to lead Meretz. Rumors of this relationship had already been circulating, but when asked about it in an interview with Ha’aretz last week, Zandberg denied it.
But forced to admit the relationship after the Klughauft interview, Zandberg said in a statement Motzoei Shabbos that she had worked with a specific agency on her campaign, and that “during the course of the campaign there were a number of skilled people who provided generous assistance. One of these was Moshe Klughauft, who volunteered to provide me with advice based on his experience in working with young voters in Jewish Home. Unlike what was portrayed in the Hadashot News piece, Klughauft never worked for my campaign. I appreciate the advice he gave me.”
Commenting on the brouhaha, Zionist Camp head Avi Gabay said that it was now clear that the “defamation” of his party that Zandberg had engaged in – claiming that Zionist Camp was too “rightwing” to lead the left – “was the fruit of the labor of a propagandist who has been responsible for shifting the public discussion in Israel to a dangerous place on the far right, that has turned the left into a band of ‘traitors.’ Now we see that he is working with Zandberg. If this is the ‘new Meretz,’ it would be better that it not pass the election threshold for Knesset representation.”