September 25, 2018

Yesh Atid candidate Ruth Calderon, secular Talmudist, stands up to the Rabbinate

Yair Lapid, head of the two-year-old Israeli political party “>secular Talmudist, was the natural pick.

“Shabbat shalom,” Calderon, 53, told the crowd, a mix of Hebrew- and English-speakers, before launching into one of her now-famous political Talmud lessons. “It's a little bit awkward to do it standing up in a bar… but I want to tell you a story that is amazingly relevant four days before the election,” she said. Reading from a hefty red Talmud that once belonged to Lapid's grandfather, Calderon told the story of an ancient Jewish president who was ousted after shaming his subjects one too many times — a clear metaphor for current Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. “Who's going to replace him? We'll know in four days,” she said with a grin.