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Cabinet Names Two to Rabbinate Elections Committee over Nrp Opposition

June 12, 1972
See Original Daily Bulletin From This Date

Over the opposition of the three National Religious Party members, the Cabinet approved today the appointment of its two representatives to the election committee supervising elections to the Chief Rabbinate. The candidates approved by the Cabinet are known to favor the election of Tel Aviv’s Chief Rabbi, Shlomo Goren, to the post of Ashkenazic Chief Rabbi of Israel. The present Chief Rabbi, Isser Yehuda Unterman, is reported to be seeking another term although he is 86 years old.

The candidates submitted by the NRP Ministers, Yosef Goldschmidt and Prof. Gad Sarfati, are not openly committed to Rabbi Goren. They are believed to have been chosen by the NRP in an effort to avoid antagonizing Rabbi Unterman. The appointments came after the Supreme Court issued an order calling on the Government to show cause why it should not appoint its candidates immediately. The order was obtained by a group of young NRP members in defiance of the party leadership. They sought to force the issue because Premier Golda Meir has been reluctant to have candidates appointed without approval of the NRP Ministers.

The candidates approved by the Cabinet, whose names were submitted by Mrs. Meir, are Aharon Uzzan, a former Agriculture Deputy Minister and Labor party member, and Rabbi Yehuda Schulmann, a former Army chaplain. One of the committee’s main tasks is to approve a list of rabbis entitled to participate in the elections and to check the distribution of the other electors as between those from religious councils and municipalities. The appointments today complete the composition of the elections committee.

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