Herzog calls on PM, Livni to raise electoral threshold

In letter to the heads of the 2 largest parties, Labor MK says bill should be drafted requiring 4% of vote for party to enter Knesset.

By GIL STERN STERN HOFFMAN
March 1, 2011 00:59
1 minute read.
Isaac Herzog

Herzog 311. (photo credit: Ariel Jerozolimski [file])

 
X

Dear Reader,
As you can imagine, more people are reading The Jerusalem Post than ever before. Nevertheless, traditional business models are no longer sustainable and high-quality publications, like ours, are being forced to look for new ways to keep going. Unlike many other news organizations, we have not put up a paywall. We want to keep our journalism open and accessible and be able to keep providing you with news and analyses from the frontlines of Israel, the Middle East and the Jewish World.

As one of our loyal readers, we ask you to be our partner.

For $5 a month you will receive access to the following:

  • A user uxperience almost completely free of ads
  • Access to our Premium Section and our monthly magazine to learn Hebrew, Ivrit
  • Content from the award-winning Jerusalem Repor
  • A brand new ePaper featuring the daily newspaper as it appears in print in Israel

Help us grow and continue telling Israel’s story to the world.

Thank you,

Ronit Hasin-Hochman, CEO, Jerusalem Post Group
Yaakov Katz, Editor-in-Chief

UPGRADE YOUR JPOST EXPERIENCE FOR 5$ PER MONTH Show me later Don't show it again

Labor leadership candidate Isaac Herzog called on Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu and opposition leader Tzipi Livni on Monday to join forces with Labor in an effort to raise the threshold for entering the Knesset.

Currently only 2 percent of the vote is needed for a party to enter the Knesset with three seats. In a letter to Livni and Netanyahu, the heads of the two largest parties, he called for the three parties to draft a bill doubling the threshold to 4%. (It was 1% before 1992 and 1.5% from 1992–2003.)

Be the first to know - Join our Facebook page.


“Such a bill would guarantee that the next Knesset would have fewer factions and would contribute to the strengthening of the large parties,” Herzog wrote. “It would also deter splitting into factions that would not pass the threshold.

Most importantly, the bill would guarantee that the next government would have fewer factions, which would decrease the coalition extortion that exists today.”

In the letter, Herzog referred indirectly to Defense Minister Ehud Barak’s Independence faction, which split off from Labor and which polls show would have a difficult time passing the current threshold.

Herzog told the Labor faction on Monday that the party should unite behind his effort to raise the threshold. But faction chairman Eitan Cabel and MK Shelly Yacimovich, Herzog’s rival for the Labor leadership, immediately said they opposed his idea.

Raising the threshold is one of several ideas being considered by a committee on electoral reform, made up of representatives of parties in the coalition and led by Transportation Minister Yisrael Katz, who is close to Netanyahu.



Shas, United Torah Judaism and Habayit Hayehudi strongly oppose raising the threshold. A spokesman for Independence faction head Einat Wilf said her faction was in favor doing so in stages.

Israel Beiteinu MK David Rotem also proposed an electoral reform maneuver on Monday, submitting a bill that would enable a candidate who has been convicted of a crime to run for prime minister.

Asked whether he was referring to his party chairman, Avigdor Lieberman, who is currently under investigation, he expressed hope that Lieberman would not be convicted, but said the bill could apply to former ministers Tzachi Hanegbi and Aryeh Deri.

Related Content

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu
August 31, 2014
Prime minister to Channel 1: I’ll be running again in next election

By Gil Stern Stern HOFFMAN