Following a short but intense membership drive, the Bayit Yehudi party announced that over 53,000 members have signed up. This number is expected to drop to around 48,000 once duplicates and disqualified applications are filtered out. More than half signed up via the Internet.
While this number still falls short of the 70,000 that the Bayit Yehudi candidates claimed to have brought in all together, it is above the 40,000 count that was unofficially released almost 2 weeks ago. More importantly, the number is reminiscent of the membership numbers the Mafdal party (as it was formerly called, as well as NRP – National Religious Party) used to have in it’s heyday, perhaps indicating that this National-Religious Party is making a comeback from irrelevancy.
In the last election, Bayit Yehudi had only 3 Knesset seats, while at it’s peak it had 12 seats.
One factor that will help Bayit Yehudi in the upcoming elections is if it decides to run together with the religious, right-wing National Union party (Ichud Haleumi). Polls have indicated the 2 parties will do better if they run together on a joint list, rather than if they run separately.