Party heads rail against bills limiting judicial activism

Livni, Lapid and Yacimovich argue bill calling for Knesset approval of Supreme Court president hurts High Court.

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October 22, 2013 08:17
1 minute read.
Israel's Supreme Court

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

Coalition and opposition members railed against coalition chairman Yariv Levin (Likud Beytenu) and Bayit Yehudi faction chairwoman Ayelet Shaked’s planned reforms to the judiciary on Monday.

Justice Minister Tzipi Livni responded to a bill that calls for the Knesset to vote for the Supreme Court president and his or her deputy. Livni said such proposals proved that Hatnua’s presence in the coalition is “critical to the future of Israel.”

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“This is an intentional assault on the High Court. We will defend the courts’ role in democracy,” she stated.

“You can have a dispute with the court, but you can’t destroy it.”

Finance Minister Yair Lapid echoed Livni’s statements, speaking out against the “attack on the High Court.”

“I have hesitations about judicial activism, but there’s a difference between criticism and trying to destroy the court,” he said.

Opposition leader Shelly Yacimovich (Labor) said the bills are “meant to make judges afraid of politicians and dependent on them.”

On Monday, Shaked denied that the bills cause any harm to the High Court’s standing.

“Judicial activism in its current form and power hurt the balance between the branches of government and their functions.

We need an open public discourse on this matter,” she said.


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