According to a survey conducted by the Project Hamedagem, 54% of the Israeli public believes that Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is mainly to blame for the rising prices of apartments in Israel. 21% blamed Yair Lapid and 16% blamed former Prime Minister Ehud Olmert.

It should be noted that Prime Minister Netanyahu drew sharp criticism from his detractors last week in a speech starting off his campaign in which he blamed the present housing crisis on Lapid and Olmert. It would seem that his belief does, at least in part, reflects the belief of the Israeli public.

The survey also investigated an issue that has taken on prominence in the battle for Knesset seats. Last week, Bayit Hayehudi produced a video that has gone viral, in which several members of the party were asked their opinion on same-gender marriage. Party Leader Naftali Bennet answered that he clearly opposed it, and he said that as a major in the IDF, “I had a soldier in the reserves who came out. We joked about him, but it was in good fun. It was fine.” Out of 18 Bayit Hayehudi candidates interviewed, seven gave a flat out “no,” citing religion, tradition or human nature as the basis of their objection. Three expressed support for recognition of civil rights of same-gender couples that would put them on a par with married mixed-gender couples but reserved the institution of marriage to male-female unions. Three of them denied that there is any “such thing” as same-gender marriages, while Danny Dayan said he had to consult “both rabbis and other people” before giving an answer. A couple avoided answering, sufficing with statements like “I don’t judge the people who receive such a blow in life” (Avraham Azoulay) and ” We need to help every citizen with their troubles” (Hagit Moshe). The closest anyone came to a “yes” was Doron Danino, who said, “They should be well.”

Bayit Hayudi’s stance drew fire from the left. “Brother Bennett’s Habayit Hayehudi vetoed the life partners’ bill that I submitted as justice minister,” commented MK Tzipi Livni on Thursday. “Habayit Hayehudi has finally come out of the closet, and the truth has been revealed. It’s a dark, homophobic and messianic party.”

“Somebody turned out the lights at Habayit Hayehudi, and in the darkness that prevails there it looks like Bennett and his pals have simply gotten lost,” said Labor MK Eitan Cabel. “It’s an offensive clip that befits the Middle Ages – not the 21st century, and certainly not a party that makes such an effort to present a front of progress and modernity. Habayit Hayehudi’s bluff has been called. It’s a far-right party trying to deceive the voters, but now its real face has been unmasked.”

Rabbi Gilad Kariv, executive director of the Israel Movement for Reform and Progressive Judaism and a candidate for the Labor Party’s Knesset list, echoed Cabel’s sentiments.

“Underneath the amusing and mischievous image the party tries to generate hides dark opinions and a one-dimensional Judaism,” said Kariv. “The time has come for the public to understand that the attempt to create a young and cool image is aimed at covering up Habayit Hayehudi’s extremist political agenda to pull into the party new constituents.”

In the survey, 48% of the public supports same-gender marriage, 33% opposed it, and 18% remained undecided.

Bayit Hayudi has also drawn criticism for supporting building up Yehuda and Shomron. Yair Lapid has even gone so far as to refer to the channeling of funds to settlements as corruption. 49% of those surveyed supported continued building in Yesha, 31% objected, and 20% were undecided.

This survey appeared Saturday in the program Hamatah Hamerkaz under the supervision of Professor Kamil Fuchs.

Benjamin Netanyahu