Likud Knesset member Rabbi Yehuda Glick was pressured Monday by politicians to go directly to the Israeli parliament after the funeral for his wife, Yaffa, z’l, to vote with the coalition on a controversial measure.
Glick spokesperson Sa’adia Grodzinski described the outrageous demand in an interview with IDF Army Radio on Tuesday, saying the MK had been asked to participate in a vote on the “supermarket bill” despite the death of his beloved wife, who was just 51, just hours earlier.
Yaffa Glick’s death caused a mini crisis because there were those in the government who were unwilling to postpone the vote, even though the courtesy is customary under such circumstances. Because there is disagreement over the measure created a controversy, Glick’s vote is important.
The measure is intended to close down convenience stores and small supermarkets on the Sabbath. Grodzinski declined to say who was involved in the attempt to pressure Glick into going to the Knesset to vote, rather than going home to begin sitting shiva – the traditional Jewish mourning ritual that even most secular Jews observe for the seven-day period following the death of an immediate family member. It is during this time that the bereaved family member receives visitors who come to offer their condolences, many bringing food and other items.
“There were such attempts,” the spokesperson said, adding, “I obviously won’t go into who and what and how, but I can confirm it and it really pains me.”
Interior Minister Aryeh Deri later confirmed that he had asked a local official to check with the rabbi of Otniel, Glick’s home community, to see “whether Jewish law could allow” for the grieving MK to “leave the shiva in order to vote.”
Deri later apologized for his actions.