A-G slams bills that ‘favor Judaism over democracy’

Weinstein's opposition "remains strong" even as cabinet adopts measures.

November 24, 2014 02:08

A Star of David decorates a lamp post in Maale Adumim, near Jerusalem . (photo credit: REUTERS)

Attorney-General Yehuda Weinstein on Sunday blasted competing bills approved by the cabinet that would define the until now amorphous “Jewish and democratic state” concept.

While avoiding citing particulars and saying he would hold off from offering a full critique until a final draft version was being discussed, Weinstein let loose on the basic approaches of the bills, favoring Judaism over democracy.

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Weinstein said that in defining “the State of Israel as the nation state of the Jewish people,” there “is no defect.”

The attorney-general expressed concern, however, that the “first principle, dealing with the country’s Jewishness, was written to stand out and with specificity,” whereas the second section dealing with democracy was left vague.

It was problematic that the bills said that courts interpreting the state’s Jewishness should give that principle “overarching priority” and a broad interpretation, whereas the state’s democratic principles “were not given the same status” as a guiding principle of interpretation, he said.

Though he did not call the bills illegal, Weinstein emphasized that his opposition to the measures remains strong even though they were adopted by the cabinet.

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