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'Ultra-Orthodox run government,' Israeli lawmaker warns

In an interview with Al-Monitor, Yesh Atid Knesset member Aliza Lavie claims that the new laws excluding many Israelis from ritual baths and undoing the core curriculum requirements for ultra-Orthodox children are ominous signs of the ultra-Orthodox stranglehold on the government.
Dr. Aliza Lavie (C), a Yesh Atid (There's a future) party candidate, celebrates exit poll results at the party's headquarters in Tel Aviv January 22, 2013. Israel's parliament, long heavy with retired generals, is getting a new look, with a freshman class that includes two youth protest leaders, an Ethiopian immigrant, a high tech millionaire and more women than ever. Thanks to the surprise second place finish of Yesh Atid, as well as the success of a new far-right group, the 120-member Knesset will have a
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“The ultra-Orthodox parties are drunk with power in this government. They run it,” said Knesset member Aliza Lavie in an interview with Al-Monitor.

Lavie, who holds a doctorate from Bar Ilan's School of Communication and lectures there on gender and multiculturalism, is a religious woman successfully operating within Yesh Atid, a secular party. Yet this week, she and her colleagues watched as their party’s achievements from the last government all collapsed, one after another. It began with the mikveh law, which denied conservative and Reform Jews access to ritual baths. The law was approved by the Knesset plenum in its third reading July 25. This defeat was followed July 26 by the Knesset’s vote to repeal the core curriculum law that required ultra-Orthodox schools to teach mathematics and English to receive state funding.

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