Cutting off her nose (and ours) to spite her face

Livni has vetoed a crucial reform of the rabbinate even though it mainly helps her own constituents.

June 4, 2013 16:43
Tzipi Livni

Livni. (photo credit: Reuters)


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

Justice Minister Tzipi Livni has successfully marketed herself as a champion of liberal values. But liberal values evidently come a distant second to personal pique: Otherwise, she wouldn’t be vetoing a bill to liberalize one of the most illiberal bastions of Israeli society – at the expense not of the party she is mad at, but of her own constituents.

The bill in question, sponsored by the Bayit Yehudi party, would significantly reduce the haredi (ultra-Orthodox)-dominated rabbinate’s ability to torment couples seeking to wed. Current law requires couples to register in the city where one of them lives, meaning they can at best choose between two municipal chief rabbis, and sometimes have no choice whatsoever. Some municipal rabbis have exploited this monopolistic power to make life miserable for applicants – especially, though not exclusively, converts (some haredi rabbis don’t recognize the state-sponsored conversion system) and immigrants from the former Soviet Union (who often have trouble producing sufficient proof of their Jewishness to satisfy more stringent rabbis).


Related Content