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March 17, 2015 1:32 pm

Israelis Flock to New York’s JFK’s Airport for Flights Home to Vote

avatar by David Daoud

Israelis are flying home to vote in the elections. PHOTO: Knesset Facebook

New York’s John F. Kennedy airport was bustling with Israelis this morning who were seeking to catch flights home. For many, their goal was to make it back in time to vote in the general elections being held today, Israel’s NRG reported on Tuesday.

While for some their flight home today was just a coincidence, today’s elections were the main topic of discussion among the travelers in the terminal. Some of the travelers even joked that a debate could be held in the airport, with representatives from all parties, according to the report.

One couple, David and Betty Gordon, told the website they are yet undecided about who to vote for but that they favor the far-right parties. “We made aliyah to Israel eight and a half years ago, and we live in Maaleh Adumim. To date, we’ve voted three times,” they said. “We’re debating whether to vote for Bayit Yehudi, but we’re not fully sure of the decision. Baruch Marzel represents us, but not his party. They only added him to gain votes.”

Noya Govrin, from Mevaseret Tzion, said that she works for “FIDF and in the Nefesh B’Nefesh organization.” She said that due to the elections, an aliyah ceremony that the groups had organized in Manhattan was held a week earlier than planned, “All the employees wanted to be in Israel to vote.” Govrin said she has already “decided to vote for one of the larger blocs, because I understand that this is the only way to make any changes. It’s a shame to waste a vote on a small party.”

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Two other couples, Dr. Eli and Adi Heller, from Givat Shmuel, and Dr. Motti and Hila Freisch from Moreshet, have been in the United States for over a week on vacation. During that time, they debated intensely about who to vote for. Both couples are still undecided. “With all the dilemmas we have, I am leaning towards Bennett,” Adi said. Her husband, on the other hand, said he is thinking of voting for the more centrist parties of Kahlon or Lapid. “What platform does Netanyahu really have? He doesn’t have one,” he said. His friend, Motti, disagreed.

“There’s a strong representation for Agudah here,” Heller said. “It looks to me that most of the plane will vote for them,” he added, referring to the large number of Ultra-Orthodox passengers boarding the flight.

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