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August 28, 2014 / 2 Elul, 5774
At a Glance

Posts Tagged ‘Yesh Atid’

Bennett Slashes Import Duties on Dairy Products

Wednesday, February 26th, 2014

Custom duties on imported butter, yogurt and other dairy products will be drastically slashed in a move by Economy Minister Naftali Bennett to increase competition and lower prices.

Import taxes on some dairy prices account for as much as 100 percent of the final cost, according to Bennett, who also is chairman of the Jewish Home party. He said he expects importer to pass on the savings to customers.

Ironically, it was Bennett’s “odd couple” ally Yair Lapid, head of the Yesh Atid party, who capitalized on the “cottage cheese” protests of two years ago to draw widespread support for his party in the last Knesset elections.

Lapid Freezes Funding for Draft-Delayed Haredim

Thursday, February 6th, 2014

Finance Minister Yair Lapid on Wednesday froze the money going to Haredi yeshivas, following a Tuesday Supreme Court ruling that ordered the state to halt all payments to yeshivas whose students’ draft has been postponed.

Lapid instructed the Finance Ministry’s comptroller to freeze the payments, but on Thursday he issued a statement saying that, after discovering that the funds had already been sent to the Education Ministry, he convened an emergency meeting with his comptroller following which he ordered her to block those funds as well.

Lapid’s statement said that this was done in an effort to obey the high court’s ruling.

Now the two offices will be cooperating to separate the 18- to 20-year-old yeshiva students with an August draft postponement, who will not be paid, from the rest of the yeshiva students.

“These will no longer receive state funds,” said the Lapid statement. “Only once the Education Ministry’s examination of their cases is concluded will the Finance Ministry release the funds to those yeshiva students not included in the court ruling.”

The Supreme Court ruled on several appeals from so called good government groups. The court ordered government to issue an updated announcement by March 31 regarding the pay, saying the justices might issue a new decision should the Knesset not come up with new legislation by then.

Meanwhile, the justices have prohibited government to transfer any funds “intended to support Torah institution students born in 1994, 95 and the first half of 96, who received their draft date starting in August, 2013, and who have not shown up to be drafted based on general decisions to postpone their draft made by the IDF Chief of Staff.”

So, everybody wins: Lapid gets to show his few remaining potential voters that he’s tough on parasitic Haredim; the Haredi yeshiva deans get to show the world that Israel hates Torah; and Yeshiva students and their families get a rare opportunity to drop their nasty habit of eating several times a day and living in homes.

Bennett’s Jewish Home and Labor Up in the Polls

Thursday, January 30th, 2014

A poll by the Knesset Channel released on Thursday confirms the trend of increased popularity for the Jewish Home party, headed by Naftali Bennett, and lesser support for Yair Lapid’s Yesh Atid party.

Unlike recent polls, strength in the Likud-Beiteinu party dropped a bit. Labor and Meretz gained backing at the expense of Yesh Atid, and the other parties drew more or less the same support as in recent polls.

If elections were held today, according to the new survey, Likud-Beiteinu would win 30 seats in the Knesset, one less than it has today. Labor, which recently elected Yitzchak Herzog to replace Shelly Yachimovich as its leader, would replace Yesh Lapid as the second largest party, with 19 Knesset Members.

Third in line is Jewish Home with 17 seats, five more than it holds today.

Yesh Atid would drop from its current 19 to only 12. Meretz, as in previous polls, would be the biggest winner in terms of percentage gains. The survey gives the left-wing party 12 seats, double its current strength.

Shas would drop to seven seats, the Ashkenazi Haredi United Torah Judaism would hold its own at seven, and Tzipi Livni’s party continues to be in the dumps, this time with four projected MKS. The remainder of the Knesset seats would be occupied by Arab parties.

Polls Show No Chance for Obama to Wreck Netanyahu Coalition

Wednesday, January 22nd, 2014

Two new polls show that Israel is marching rightward and that the nationalist and religious parties would even be stronger than in the current coalition if elections were held today, mostly at the expense of Yair Lapid

The Likud Beitenu party, which reflects the merger of Likud and Yisrael Beitenu that still may be dissolved, would increase its strength from 31 in the current Knesset to 34, according to a Channel 1 poll, and 40 according to a survey by Geocartography. The second poll also showed that if the two parties were to split, they would win a combined number of 55 mandates

The Jewish Home party, headed by Naftali Bennett, would hold its own, with one poll showing a gain of one seat and the other a loss of one seat. If Likud and Yisrael Beitenu were to split, the strength of Jewish Home would sink to seven.

The left-wing Meretz party, which now has six Knesset Members, would gain one or four seats in the next Knesset, depending on which poll is accepted.

The increased strength of Likud Beiteinu comes at the expense of Yair Lapid and his Yesh Atid party, which was the star of the last election by winning 19 seats. The Channel 1 poll gives it only 9 seats and the Geocartography survey came up with 13.

Despite the difference in the results, the trend is clear – a sharp rise for Likud Beiteinu and a punch in the pace for Lapid. The “champion of the middle class” has lost its luster as the truth quickly emerges that he represents the upper middle class.

He has an ace up his sleeve if he can bring down the price of housing, but that is not about to happen tomorrow, next month or even this year.

The gain of Meretz and Likud Beiteinu at his expense indicates that Lapid’s charisma attracted leftists and center right secular nationalists.

As for the other parties, Shas still is around and will stay or more at less with 11 seats, according to the polls.

Labor, now under the lead of Yitzchak Herzog instead of Shelly, Yachimovich, would drop from the current 15 to 11 or gain one seat.

Both polls reveal that Tzipi Livni’s HaTunah party would be cut in half in the Knesset, from the current six MKs to only 3.

One surprise result is that former MK Aryeh Eldad, Baruch Marzel and Itamar Ben-Gvir, all of them to the right of the right, would win three seats.

Lapid Says He Doesn’t Trust the Palestinian Authority

Wednesday, January 15th, 2014

Yesh Atid party chairman Yair Lapid, Israel’s favorite chameleon, declared on Wednesday that he does not trust the Palestinian Authority and would not depend on it to keep Israel safe while having full control of the Jordan Valley.

He took what he said is a centrist view – against annexing Jewish communities in Judea and Samaria and against giving away the Jordan Valley to the Palestinian Authority.

He wrote on his Facebook page, “The time has come to separate from the Palestinians. We are not dealing with ‘peace’ but rather with the need to separate in peace….

“We can only depend on ourselves…. The Palestinians have proven time after time they do not deserve to be trusted.”

Lapid Puts Cheeses under Price Control; Consumers Say ‘So What?’

Monday, December 30th, 2013

Finance Minister Yair Lapid called a press conference to announce great news for consumers – soft white cheese and whipped cream now will be under price control.

Lapid’s move is a belated populist reply to the :”cottage cheese” protests of three summers ago, but Monday’s publicity stunt did not make an immediate positive impression on Israelis.

The Israeli consumer has woken up the past several years and no longer is so dumb.

Placing cottage cheese under price control is like “giving aspirin to a cancer patient,” said Itzik Alrov, who founded the Israeli Consumers Organization.

He said it makes more sense to break up the monopolies that control the food market, For example, Tnuva, Strauss and Tara hold 90 percent of the white cheese market.

Lapid said that an accountant hired by the government examined the market and discovered what Israelis have known for years – that Tnuva’s profits on soft white cheese and whipped cream is “exceptional and unreasonable.”

Lapid’s price controls will reduce the price on “5 percent” soft white cheese by approximately 38 percent from the current price of 6.54 shekels to approximately 5.23 shekels.

During the “cottage cheese protests,” a public boycott forced the price down to 5 shekels.

“The markets in Israel are run like a Soviet system,” said Alvor.

Lapid can count on his Yesh Atid party’s gaining zero seats in the next Knesset in the next poll, and his insult to the intelligence of consumers might even cost him a couple of seats.

Lapid Stages Slight Comeback in Polls

Wednesday, December 25th, 2013

Yair Lapid’s Yesh Atid party would win 14 Knesset seats if elections were held today, compared with 11 in a poll in November, according to the Hebrew-language Walla! website.

The increased strength is attributed to recent bills on more rights for homosexuals that Yesh Atid has sponsored, although they not yet been passed into law. The results still show Lapid is far from returning to his present Knesset representation of 19 Knesset Members.

The poll gave the Jewish Home party 11 seats, one less than it now holds in the Knesset, while Shas would nine seats, two less than it now holds. Shas is holding its own better than expected since the recent death of the party founder and spiritual leader Rabbi Ovadia Yosef.

Party chairman Aryeh Deri and his predecessor Eli Yishai are in in a power struggle that could divide the party.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/lapid-stages-slight-comeback-in-polls/2013/12/25/

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