(photo credit: Miiam Alster)
While new MKs are excitedly giving their inaugural speeches in the plenum,
veteran lawmakers are itching to start real legislative work.
Sheetrit (The Tzipi Livni Party), the longest-serving member of the current
Knesset, petitioned temporary Knesset Speaker Binyamin Ben-Eliezer, who has been
a lawmaker for the most consecutive years of all MKs, to allow legislators to
submit parliamentary questions and motions for the agenda.
important thing is that the Knesset work and discuss current issues,” Sheetrit
said on Monday. “It looks like it will take a long time for a new government to
be formed, and in the meantime, the Knesset isn’t holding
For the past two weeks, outgoing ministers have been
summarizing time in office, and answering questions in the plenum. In addition,
new MKs are giving their first-ever speeches. This is set to continue until a
coalition is formed, after which permanent committees can be formed and bills
can be brought to a vote.
Sheetrit suggested that ministers in the
outgoing government, who will continue to serve until the coalition is formed,
respond to motions to the agenda, and that MKs be allowed to give one-minute
Another possibility Sheetrit mentioned in his letter is only to
allow motions that apply to the two temporary Knesset committees, Finance, and
Foreign Affairs and Defense.
Meanwhile, at least one new MK realized that
his work has not yet begun.
MK Ronen Hoffman (Yesh Atid) asked
Ben-Eliezer to shorten the Knesset recess that is supposed to begin on March 20
and continue until April 22.
“I’m here to work. The citizens of Israel
sent us to represent them, and it is not appropriate to go on such a long break
before the Knesset begins its regular activity,” he wrote to the temporary
Hoffman also pointed out that the Knesset will have to
vote on a budget shortly after the recess ends, and the current schedule could
make it difficult to hold a “serious, deep and organized discussion” on the
proposed budget and its many implications.