Porush, Menachem

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PORUSH, MENACHEM (1916– ), ḥaredi politician and public figure, member of the Fourth to Thirteenth Knessets. Porush was born in Jerusalem. He studied at the Eẓ ha-Ḥayyim yeshivah in Jerusalem. In the years 1932–38 he was a reporter for ḥaredi papers. In 1949–63 he was appointed editor of Kol Yisrael, and in the years 1950–51 was editor of Ha-Mevasser. In 1951 Porush founded a network of nurseries for ḥaredi children. In 1953 he was one of the founders of the independent education system of Agudat Israel, and served as one of its directors. In 1954 he became a member of the Agudat Israel Center in Israel, and a member of the Executive of the World Agudat Israel. In 1955 he was appointed chairman of the Agudat Israel Center in Israel. Porush was first elected to the Fourth Knesset in 1959 on the Agudat Israel list. He was a member of the Knesset Education and Culture Committee from the Fourth to Ninth Knessets, and of the Constitution, Law, and Justice Committee from the Fifth to Eighth Knessets. In the Ninth and Tenth Knessets he served as chairman of the Labor and Welfare Committee, and in the Twelfth Knesset as a member of the Foreign Affairs and Security Committee and the Interior and Environment Committee. In the years 1984–85 he served as deputy minister of labor and welfare, and again in 1990–92, after the Labor Party left the National Unity Government.

Simultaneously with his membership in the Knesset Porush was elected to the Jerusalem municipality in 1969, and served as deputy mayor of Jerusalem under mayor Teddy *Kollek until 1974. In 1973 he established Kiryat ha-Yeled – a center for ḥaredi children.

The son of Menachem Porush, meir, was a member of the Jerusalem City Council in the years 1983–96, and deputy mayor under both Teddy Kollek and Ehud *Olmert in the years 1989–96. He has been a member of the Knesset on behalf of Agudat Israel within Yahadut ha-Torah since the Fourteenth Knesset, and served as deputy minister of construction and housing in the years 1996–2003.

[Susan Hattis Rolef (2nd ed.)]