Woman Elected Mayor Of Haifa — Ron Huldai Reelected In Tel Aviv
(JTA) — A woman was elected mayor of Haifa for the first time and incumbent mayor of Tel Aviv, Ron Huldai, will serve a fifth term after municipal elections were held across Israel.
Voters in Jerusalem will return to the polls in two-week’s time for a run-off election between the top two vote getters. Jerusalem municipal council member Moshe Lion and former deputy mayor Ofer Berkovitch, who each received about 30 percent of the vote, will face each in a mayoral run-off election.
Lion, a businessman, was backed by both Defense Minister Avigdor Liberman of the right-wing Yisrael Beiteinu party and the Sephardic Orthodox Shas Party as well as other haredi Orthodox factions.
Jerusalem Affairs Minister and Likud Party Knesset member Ze’ev Elkin, who was backed in the race by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and was regarded as the front runner in the race finished with 20 percent of the vote.
Some 60 percent of eligible Israeli voters, or about 4 million people, voted on Tuesday, up ten percent from 2013. This year, municipal election day was a national holiday for the first time, as it is for national elections.
In Tel Aviv, long-time mayor Ron Huldai defeated his deputy mayor Asaf Zamir with 46 percent of the vote. Zamir garnered 34 percent of the vote.
In Haifa, Einat Kalisch-Rotem defeated incumbent mayor Yona Yahav to become the first woman mayor of one of Israel’s three largest cities. Kalisch-Rotem, who garnered 55 percent of the vote, was backed by Labor Party leader Avi Gabbay but not the local Labor party, and was supported by the left-wing Meretz Party and the haredi community in Haifa.
Ten women were elected to head communities in Israel, over seven women elected in 2013.
This story "Woman Elected Mayor Of Haifa — Ron Huldai Reelected In Tel Aviv" was written by JTA.