Incoming MK for Habayit Hayehudi Has Dismal Record, Opposes Same-sex Marriage

'A family is a father, mother and children, and not two fathers and a child,' said Avi Wurtzman during his previous Knesset stint. While doing nothing to advance socioeconomic issues, he did initiate a 23 million shekel project for daily study of Torah.

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Avi Wurtzman.
Avi Wurtzman.Credit: Tomer Appelbaum

Avi Wurtzman, the former deputy education minister for Habayit Hayehudi, is returning to the Knesset after a short hiatus, to replace Yinon Magal.

MK Magal is resigning in the wake of several allegations of sexual harassment that came to light over the last week.

Wurtzman made headlines a few times during his short tenure, including once when he declared at a conference. "A family is a father, mother and children, and not two fathers and a child.” He was responding to a Knesset decision to award tax credits to families with same-sex parents.

Wurtzman is also known for initiating a 23 million shekels ($5.94 million) project for the daily study of Torah, funded by the Education Ministry. He approved the funding, even though it was not clear why it was supported by the Education Ministry, rather than the Culture Ministry.

The MK was served a restraining order against using ministry funds during the last Knesset election campaign, after he sent Education Ministry workers emails glorifying his work.

The Social Guard, a social action NGO, gave Wurtzman the lowest marks of any member of the 19th Knesset on socioeconomic issues.

“Wurtzman did not promote socioeconomic issues in the Knesset, and sometimes even failed to advance issues he was entrusted with as deputy education minister, The Social Guard’s Eran Rondel wrote. “For example, he did not show up for the vote on expanding the law on lending out textbooks, even though most of his party supported it, and he was absent from the Knesset plenum when his entire party opposed preparing educational programs against violence.”

The NGO gave its highest mark to Habayit Hayehudi MK Shuli Mualem.

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