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Nov 14, 2012

Am Shalem Disqualified From Running For Knesset.. But They Were Never Planning To

Last night it was revealed, by a journalist who thought he had stumbled upon the scoop of the century, that Am Shalem, the political party founded by Rav Chaim Amsalem after he was unceremoniously chased out of the SHAS party, cannot run in the upcoming elections for Knesset.

There is a procedure for registering a new party for elections, and the registration takes about 45 days, with the entire process taking about 91 days. The journalist discovered that Am Shalem has not yet even begun the process. That means, there is no way Am Shalem could possibly compete in the upcoming elections.

Seems like a pretty big fashla if you ask me..

Rav Amsalem's response though is even more surprising.

Rav Amsalem said that Am Shalem is not a party, and was never registered or intended to be one. He, Am Shalem really, is running under a different party name, that has already been registered in the past. "Achi Ezer" is the name of the party and it was registered by supporters of, and with the blessings of, Rav Mordechai Eliyahu zt"l. The party, Rav Amsalem says, is identical in its goals to that of Am Shalem, and therefore it was decided to use Achi Ezer instead of go through the procedures and expense of opening up and registering a new party.

Clearly this was all thought out and planned in advance. There is no way this could have happened so quickly simply as a response to Raviv Druker's discovery. Rav Amsalem would have had to think of the solution on the spot, find out that this party was available for use, he would have had to figure out who administered the name and negotiate use of the party. All in one night? Clearly this has been the plan all along.

The question is why we have not heard about it until now. Rav Amsalem has marketed himself through the party name Am Shalem. He has spent money on signs, he has spent valuable media time and other resources getting the name Am Shalem into our heads. Was he going to spring the name switch on us at the last minute, in some sort of surprising news story, and hope that people will remember the new name when they go into the voting booth?

Rav Amsalem had/has something up his sleeve. I don't know if Druker, the journalist who revealed the info, stumbled across it and blew it, or if Druker was used perhaps, willingly or not, in some sort of grand marketing scheme.

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1 comment:

  1. As far as I know in order to run for keneset you need to run as an official party but you don't have to use that party's name.


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