Opposition: Ministers chose seats over social justice

Kadima says report fails to reflect public's demands; Yachimovich accuses ministers of "being bought off with a million shekels"; Tibi denounces decision: "Gov't encourages racist discrimination."

October 9, 2011 19:45
1 minute read.
Opposition leader Tzipi Livni

Opposition leader Tzipi Livni 311. (photo credit: Marc Israel Sellem)


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Kadima mocked the ministers who passed the Trajtenberg Committee’s recommendations on Sunday, accusing them of caring more about maintaining their ministries than improving the lives of the middle class.

The heads of Kadima called for initiating a new state budget for 2012 rather than making changes advocated by Trajtenberg that would not solve the problems brought into the limelight by this summer’s protests against the high cost of living.

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“The ministers know that the report is incomplete and that it has failed to reflect the new priorities that the public demanded,” a Kadima spokesman said.

“By voting for it, they proved that they care more about their own political survival than social justice.”

Kadima MK Orit Zuaretz said the ministers “sacrificed ideology for cabinet seat-ology.” She said she would work to prevent the passage of the report’s clauses in the Knesset Finance Committee and other parliamentary forums.

New Labor Party leader Shelly Yacimovich called the government’s decision “horrible.” She compared the Trajtenberg Report to the mammoth Arrangements Bill presented annually by the Finance Ministry, which contains a wide range of disconnected clauses and is often used to hide unpopular decisions so they can pass unnoticed.

“The vote today took the objectionable path of the Arrangements Bill,” she said.

“In a few hours, rebellious ministers who were bought off with a million shekels ignored the damage the report’s recommendations could inflict.”

United Arab List-Ta’al MK Ahmed Tibi complained that the committee’s recommendations would not help Israeli Arabs.

“The decision ignores the sector that suffers from the most acute housing shortage,” Tibi said. “It proves the government discriminates against twenty percent of the population, which is the opposite of social justice.”

Israel Beiteinu responded that the party succeeded in changing the criteria for housing benefits in a way that would help all sectors of the population, Arabs included.

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