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Wednesday, January 30, 2013 

Smith Research poll finds majority prefers government without Haredis

The Jerusalem Post did a survey and found plenty of people would rather the next government be formed sans the ultra-Orthodox parties:
A plurality of the public and an overwhelming majority of Yesh Atid voters want Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu to form a coalition without haredi parties Shas and United Torah Judaism, a Smith Research poll conducted this week found.

[...] Thirty-eight percent preferred the coalition excluding haredim, 17% wanted the right-wing option, 15% the wide coalition and 12% called for excluding Bayit Yehudi. Among those polled, 18% did not have an opinion.

Among Yesh Atid voters, 68% preferred a coalition without the haredi parties. Their second choice was a broad coalition.

[...] Likud Beytenu voters also preferred a coalition excluding Shas and UTJ, with 34% choosing that option, 17% selecting the broad coalition, and 14% wanting to exclude Bayit Yehudi.

[...] Among supporters of Shas, 52% preferred a right-wing government without Yesh Atid, 29% wanted to exclude Bayit Yehudi, 10% called for a broad coalition, and only five percent said they backed a coalition without their own party.
I think that's telling something about just what kind of Haredis might've voted for Shas - the ones who oppose army service. The numbers telling how many oppose the inclusion of Jewish Home in the coalition are also eyebrow raising, since they suggest that a significant number of Shas voters resent their pro-service positions.

The article also tells that Shas and UTJ, bewilderingly enough, are trying to get Jewish Home to back their positions against army service. Oh good grief. Might I suggest that, if they were to encourage their public to at least seek legitimate employment more seriously, they could find it easier to get around the military matters, if it's really that much of a problem for them?

For now, I want to say that I too would rather those parties remain on the outskirts of the coalition, particularly Shas, based on their collaboration with the Oslo agreement architects, which Aryeh Deri, now back in the Knesset, had a hand in allowing. He most definitely should not be a minister, and could very easily cause problems if he does become one again.

Update: in related news, the mayor of Modiin-Maccabim-Reut argues that only education can help equalize the burden to share.

Update 2: Rabbi Natan Slifkin says that serving in the army can help the Haredis to understand why they learn Torah. Fortunately, as noted earlier, plenty are serving more in the army.

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