Rabbi Litzman: Despite Threat of Elections, No Compromise on Yeshivah Students

YERUSHALAYIM -
Deputy Health Minister Rabbi Yaakov Litzman (Hadas Parush/Flash90)

Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu warned Sunday at a meeting of the coalition party leaders that he would need to call for early elections if a new Draft Law is not passed quickly.

“If there is no breakthrough and compromise by the chareidi parties within two weeks, we will decide at the beginning of the next month on a date for elections,” Netanyahu said at the meeting.

Coalition Chairman MK David Amsalem criticized the High Court descision that the State must pass a new Draft Law by December.

“The State asked for seven months, so give us seven months. Why did they only give an extenstion of three months?” he asked in an interview with Radio 103.

Amsalem said that without the passing of the Draft Law the coalition will fall apart. “If we do not succeed in passing a new Draft Law, the country will go to elections,” he said.

In response to Netanyahu’s threat of elections, Deputy Health Minister Rabbi Yaakov Litzman said on Sunday, “We have no interest in elections, but we will not be able to compromise on the essential issue of preserving the status of yeshivah students, allowing them all to continue to learn Torah unhidered.”

Rabbi Litzman also added that the coalition agreement between UTJ and the Likud had an explicit clause to pass a Draft Law by both parties; it is thus incorrect for Netanyahu to try pass the blame to UTJ.

In any case, Rabbi Litzman noted that “the various proposals of the government will need to be brought before the Moetzes Gedolei HaTorah to decide on the matter.”

Political analysts noted that Netanyahu’s threat of calling elections in the winter in August – during the Knesset’s summer break – is no more than a means of placing pressure on the chareidi parties.