(photo credit: MARC ISRAEL SELLEM/THE JERUSALEM POST)
Political parties will gain access to the national population registry, via a rule the Knesset Law, Constitution and Justice Committee approved on Tuesday that seeks to put an end to the phenomenon of duplicate and fake party memberships.
It is illegal for anyone to be a member of more than one political party.
Access to population registry will allow parties to check their membership lists against the government’s lists before any kind of primary election, whether it is for a party’s leadership, Knesset candidates list or central committee.
Coalition chairman Yariv Levin (Likud), who proposed the change in regulations, said it will combat double party memberships, prevent people from trying to register dead people as party members and allow parties to update and examine their membership lists.
MK Uri Maklev (United Torah Judaism) argued against the change, saying that parties can abuse their access to population registry.
“There are arrangements to prevent abusing [the access] and whoever does so will be put on trial,” Levin responded.
Using the government’s lists for anything other than checking party membership will be a felony, and the parties will be required to destroy their copies of the lists after each primary.
Margalit Levy, representing the Interior Ministry, said that parties’ representatives will have to come to the Population, Immigration and Borders Authority with proper authorization and will be able to check the government’s list on a computer that has only the details they need, which will compare it to the parties’ information.