web analytics
March 30, 2015 / 10 Nisan, 5775
At a Glance
InDepth
Sponsored Post


Knesset Member Vaknin Announces He Won’t Seek Re-Election

Knesset member Yitzhak Vaknin of Shas party speaks at the Finance committee in the Knesset in Jerusalem.

Knesset member Yitzhak Vaknin of Shas party speaks at the Finance committee in the Knesset in Jerusalem.
Photo Credit: Kobi Gideon/Flash90

Knesset Ethics Committee Chairman and Deputy Speaker Yitzhak Vaknin announced during the spring recess that he will not seek re-election to the Knesset.

Vaknin has been a Knesset member representing the ultra-Orthodox Shas party since the beginning of Prime Minister Netanyahu’s first term in 1996. No current Shas MK has served as long.

In addition to serving five consecutive Knesset terms, Vaknin also served as Deputy Communications Minister in Ehud Barak’s administration and Deputy Labor and Welfare Minister in Ariel Sharon’s administration. He has become a staple of both the Finance Committee and Appropriations Committee for over a decade, fighting to narrow the gaps between the rich and the poor in Israeli society.

Vaknin, 54, is not the typical Shas member. He retired an I.D.F. Major (Rav Seren) and speaks fluent Arabic. He lives on a moshav in the upper western Galilee near the Lebanese border that has a mixed population of Jews and Arabs. He served in various local political positions from 1982 until his election to the Knesset in 1996.

Vaknin’s position that the thousands of ultra-orthodox Jews who don’t learn in Yeshiva but are registered as such should be forced to serve in the military was not a popular one in his party. He is one of the biggest supporters of the ultra-orthodox unit that was established in the I.D.F.. He has always been one of Shas’ most popular members among secular MKs, which paved the way to his appointment last year as Chairman of the Knesset Ethics Committee.

Vaknin said he is leaving politics because he feels he has gotten everything he wanted out of being a Member of Knesset. He stressed that he will remain until the end of the current term. Shas has been suffering in the polls, so his co-workers have the bittersweet challenge of saying goodbye to a friend while feeling secretly relieved that he won’t be competing for a spot in the next Knesset. He is considered close to Shas’ spiritual leader, Rabbi Ovadia Yosef, so the probability of him joining another party, such as the ones likely to be created by Aryeh Deri and Chaim Amsallem, are next to none.

About the Author: Jeremy Saltan is a frequent guest on various radio programs and and a veteran political analyst. He has run political campaigns in English and Hebrew for Israeli municipality, party institution, primary and general elections. Jeremy’s opinion pieces have been published, quoted or credited by Voice of America, Daily Beast, France 24, Washington Post, BBC, Al Jazeera, Foreign Policy, Jerusalem Post, Times of Israel, Israel National News and the Jewish Press and more.


If you don't see your comment after publishing it, refresh the page.

Our comments section is intended for meaningful responses and debates in a civilized manner. We ask that you respect the fact that we are a religious Jewish website and avoid inappropriate language at all cost.

If you promote any foreign religions, gods or messiahs, lies about Israel, anti-Semitism, or advocate violence (except against terrorists), your permission to comment may be revoked.

No Responses to “Knesset Member Vaknin Announces He Won’t Seek Re-Election”

Comments are closed.

Current Top Story
Hillary Rodham Clinton. July 21, 2014.
Hillary Clinton Wants US-Israel Relations on ‘Constructive Footing’
Latest Indepth Stories
jabotinsky with sword

Jabotinsky said “Go To Hell” was a good retort to opponents of the Jewish people; fitting for Obama.

Obama Racine

Obama pulled off one of US history’s greatest cons,twice fooling a gullible electorate and most Jews

Auschwitz Entrance

While in Auschwitz I felt a tangible intensity. I could sense that I was in a place of sheer evil.

Bibi and Obama: Head to Head

Obama needs to wake up. The real enemy is not Netanyahu but Iran, Hizbullah, Hamas, Islamic Jihad,IS

My beliefs & actions have led to numerous death threats against me; my excommunication by my church

In November 2014, Islamic Relief Worldwide was classified as a terrorist organization by the United Arab Emirates.

Too rarely appreciated for its symbolic weight; it can represent freedom and independence.

Erica Pelman is a spiritually-driven woman. She is founder and director of “In Shifra’s Arms” (ISA), an organization that offers aid to pregnant Jewish women of all religious backgrounds practically, financially and emotionally. Its arms are open to any pregnant woman in need whether single, divorced, separated, or from a financially-strapped family. “Presently, we are […]

Many so-called “humanitarian NGOs” frequently abuse Israel by applying false moral equivalencies

Israeli history now has its version of “Dewey Defeats Truman” with headlines from 2 anti-Bibi papers

In God’s plan why was it necessary that Moses be raised by Pharaoh, away from his own family&people?

In their zechus may we all come to appreciate that life is a fleeting gift and resolve to spend every precious moment of it as if it were the last.

In any event, Mr. Netanyahu after the election sought to soften his statement on Palestinian statehood and apologized for what he conceded were remarks that “offended some Israeli citizens and offended members of the Israeli Arab community.”

A worthy idea any way you look at it.

More Articles from Jeremy Saltan
Benjamin Netanyahu

For Lapid to successfully challenge Netanyahu, he will need to find the right time for a strategic exit from the government.

The right of center parties continue to maintain their lead, albeit by a slightly smaller margin in eight polls released December 9-15.

Knesset Jeremy Weekly Average #8 (week of Nov 25-Dec 1) of 7 polls (Channel 10, Globes, Knesset Channel, Channel 2, Yisrael Hayom, Yediot Ahronont, Channel 1). Current Knesset seats in [brackets], Week 7 average in (brackets) 37.5 (38.0) [42] Likud Beytenu 19.2 (21.4) [08] Labor 11.7 (11.8) [10] Shas 9.8 (9.5) [05] Jewish Home-Tekuma 8.0 […]

The average of 2 polls published last week, Channel 2 and Jerusalem Post. The Post poll was conducted November 12-13 and the Channel 2 poll was published November 14.

This week’s average shows Likud Beitenu and Labor position similar to last week. Shas gains and takes the third position while Lapid’s Yesh Atid drops and falls into the fourth position. Hadash passes Meretz, while Kadima and Independence pick up gains. Am Shalem is also picking up steam. The right block gains ground this week with the help of Shas and Am Shalem’s gains.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/indepth/knesset/knesset-corner/knesset-member-vaknin-announces-he-wont-seek-re-election/2012/04/18/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: