Party Chairman Rabbi Prof. Daniel Hershkowitz
Photo: Gil Yohanan
Chairman: Naftali BennettHabayit Hayehudi (Hebrew for "Jewish Home"), was formed in 2008, on the basis of the National Religious Party.
The National Religious Party was originally formed in 1956 and was part of almost every Mapai-led government, acting to maintain the status quo in matters of religion and state.
After the 1967 war, the party began objecting to withdrawal from Gaza and the West Bank, a stance boosted later on. On the political spectrum, the new position drew the party away from Labor and closer to Likud.
The next Knessets saw the NRP's electoral power decline and in February of 2006 it struck a political alliance with the National Union. The two parties dissolved the alliance in November 2008. The newly inducted Habayit Hayehudi party effectively joined members of the National Religious Party, Tkuma, and Moledet; as well as several members of the National Union, who splintered off their original party.
- The party vows to maintain and fight for Israel's Jewish identity. The party sees maintaining the integrity of the Land of Israel as a prerequisite for preserving the integrity of the Jewish people, both in the homeland and in the Diaspora. The party strives to cooperate with the traditional and secular social forces in society. The party will push for the reinstating of the nationality clause in Israeli IDs and believes that national unity is the key.
- The party wishes to reinforce Israel's Jewish nature through religious legislation, brought about through as wide a consensus as possible. The party will opposes any changes meant to strip religious legislation of its authority. The party will fight to enforce all Shabbat laws. The party will push to cement the status of the Chief Rabbinate as the highest religious authority and the only provider of religious services in Israel. The party will push to reinforce and expand the rabbinical courts' jurisdiction, especially on matters of matrimony and conversion; while striving to find a solution for the problem of divorce-refusees. The party will push for a full implementation of kosher food laws.
- Habayit Hayehudi sees military service as every able man's duty and considered the military's "hesder" arrangements satisfactory. The party opposes any call urging soldiers to refuse legal orders, as well as the refusal act itself. The party wishes to see more service options beyond that of the military per se, such as the National Service, which the party considers immensely important.
- As far as the regional peace process is concerned, the party believes in religious Zionism's core principle – the Land of Israel for the people of Israel. The party will support direct peace talks with all Arab countries and the Palestinian people, based on the following principles: Assuring Israel's absolute security; a relentless fight against terror; Israel's borders will span from the banks of the Jordan River to the Mediterranean Sea; no Palestinian state will be formed on any part of Israel; Jerusalem is Israel's eternal capital and shall never be divided; the Jewish settlements throughout the Land of Israel are vital to our safety and any future peace agreement must assure the settlements' integrity and that they remain under Israeli sovereignty; the Golan Heights are an inseparable part of Israel and must remain under Israeli sovereignty; the party opposes the Arabs "right of return;" any peace agreement must include the return of all of Israel's missing troops. The party will strive to pass a law requiring a referendum be held should any agreement include the ceding of land.
- In view of the ongoing terror attacks by the Palestinian Authority and the Palestinian terror groups, the Oslo Accords and the Road Map are, pro facto, null and void.
- The party sees the settlement movement as fulfilling the word of the Lord and vows to propel the settlement movement and to oppose any suspension in its activity. The party pledges to lobby for the construction of new communities and the expansion of existing ones in the Galilee, the Golan Heights, Judea and Samaria, the Jordan Valley and the Negev. The party will push to substantially increase the Jewish population in Judea and Samaria; and for the creation of an absolute Jewish majority in the Galilee and Golan. The party will also dedicate funds to the expanding and development of the Negev communities. The party will strive to form a rural authority dedicated solely to the needs of Israel's agricultural and rural communities.
- The party strives to make education a top priority in Israel. The party will work towards forming proper settings for teaching Torah in Israel and to improve the learning conditions in existing seminary schools. The party will push to reinforce the teachings of religious Zionism's principles and values. The party will push to maintain the independence of the religious Zionism's school system. The party will work to assure the proper funding of said school system, as well as that of higher education and research facilities. The party will work towards eventually instating free higher education.
- The party will work to abolish violence and abuse within the home, via education, legislation and exacerbating punitive action against offenders.
- The party will push for the integration of women and religious women in all walks of Israeli society, including in official office and the Knesset.
- Habayit Hayehudi sees reinforcing the Jewish family and increasing birth rates as a primary objective and a national goal. The party will therefore push for increased funds allocation for multiple-children families. The party will act to reduce the numbers of unnecessary abortions.
- The party will make immigration and absorption a top national priority and will act to amend the Law of Return to restrict eligibility to immediate descendents of Jews only and annul the "grandchild clause."
- The party pledges to push for the release of Jonathan Pollard.