Governance group petitions top court over ‘Grunis Law’

Movement for Quality Government files urgent petition, saying law would damage judicial independence.

January 4, 2012 03:18
1 minute read.
Israel's Supreme Court

Israeli Supreme Court 311. (photo credit: REUTERS/FILE)

Less than 24 hours after the Knesset approved the “Grunis Law,” the Movement for Quality Government filed an urgent petition with the High Court of Justice on Tuesday, seeking its abolition.

In the petition, MQG chairman attorney Eliad Shraga said the law would damage judicial independence, and harm public confidence in the process of appointing Supreme Court presidents.

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The Grunis Law lowers the minimum tenure for a Supreme Court president from three to two years, and will therefore allow Justice Asher Dan Grunis to replace Dorit Beinisch as Supreme Court president when she retires next month at the mandatory age of 70.

Grunis will be 67 by the time Beinisch retires, which would have disqualified him from the post.

Politicians on the Right believe Grunis’s views on judicial activism make him less likely to order the dismantling of West Bank homes or to go against other decisions made by state authorities.

The Movement for Quality Government called the law “a fatal blow that will harm judicial independence and public confidence, and as a result harm the rule of law and societal wellbeing.”

“Society’s well-being depends on a judicial authority that functions properly, and which is independent and inspires public confidence,” the petition reads, adding that public trust is built by the quality of judgments and by judges’ professionalism, independence, integrity and lack of bias.

Lahav Harkov contributed to this report.

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