Knesset Law Committee chairman David Rotem canceled eight special meetings on
his electoral reform bills on Thursday following pressure he received from the
Prime Minister’s Office.
Rotem wrote the members of his committee last
month that they would hold the meetings during the Knesset’s extended summer
recess in order to expedite the passage of the bills. The first special meeting
was expected to take place next week.
But following the intervention of
Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu, there will be no deliberations on the bills
until the Knesset returns to session on October 13.
“When the Prime
Minister’s Office asks me to do something, I agree,” Rotem said.
bills will still pass into law by the end of November.”
had asked Netanyahu to prevent Rotem from holding the meetings and the prime
minister initially agreed. But Netanyahu decided against it when the opposition
did not abide by its part of the deal and filibustered in deliberations on the
state budget. Nevertheless, Netanyahu relented and his office called Rotem on
The first bill, which passed its first reading by a vote of 63
to 46 on July 31, would limit the number of cabinet ministers to nine, deputy
ministers to four and no-confidence motions to once a month.
bill, which passed by a 64 to 49 vote with one abstention, would make it harder
for Knesset factions to break up and would raise the electoral threshold from 2
to 4 percent.
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