Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Dov Lipman Becomes First US-Born Knesset Member Since 1984

Israel's Parliament will have its first American-born Knesset member since the late, Rabbi Meir Kahane who served as a Knesset Member in 1984. Maryland- native Dov Lipman is a member of the Yesh Atid party. 

In a post election statement, Lipman credited English-speaking voters with his victory, crediting the English debates that were sponsored by The Jerusalem Post for the rise in support for Yesh Atid. 

“I thank all the voters who showed their faith in me and in our party,” Lipman said. “I view this as an opportunity and a responsibility to those who put me in office. I look forward to being in touch with the entire English-speaking population regarding how my office can serve their needs. I will give every ounce of energy I have to the people of Israel.”

Lipman told Haaretz he will relinquish his citizenship voluntarily when he takes office.

“I am going to be relinquishing my U.S. citizenship with a very heavy heart,” he said. “One side of my family came to America to escape pogroms in Russia, and the other survived the Holocaust. America provided us with a safe haven in which to rebuild our family. My father was someone who was able to become a federal judge while being a religious Jew. It’s painful, but I’ve been told it’s the law. I do so with a heavy heart and of course, there is also the flip side - knowing I’ll be pure Israeli.”