Rivlin again warns of erosion of public trust if elections go 3rd round

President Reuven Rivlin quipped that if there is a third round, Supreme Court Justice Hanan Melcer would receive an emergency call.

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September 25, 2019 16:10
2 minute read.
Rivlin again warns of erosion of public trust if elections go 3rd round

The ultimate decider: President Reuven Rivlin. (photo credit: MARC ISRAEL SELLEM)

President Reuven Rivlin again issued a warning of the risk of erosion of public trust in Israel's democratic system if there is a third round of elections.

He was speaking on Wednesday at the President's Residence after receiving the official results of the elections for the 22nd Knesset from Supreme Court Justice Hanan Melcer who is chairman of the Central Elections Committee.


Rivlin quipped that if there is a third round, Melcer would receive an emergency call known in Hebrew as Tsav Shmone.

Melcer responded that he wouldn't be happy about it, but like any good soldier would comply.

Pleased that the second round of elections defied efforts to delegitimize the previous results and the work of the Central Elections Committee, and was conducted according to the full democratic letter of the law, Melcer said that there was a double cause for celebration.  Not only was he able to present the president with the official results but was also able to wish him happy birthday, because Wednesday was Rivlin's 80th birthday according to the Jewish calendar. The Gregorian calendar date of his birthday was on September 9.

Melcer disclosed that for the second round of elections, 150,000 people were deployed – the largest number in the nation's history he said, adding that the overwhelming majority were women, who proved that women are adept at fulfilling such an important mission.

Speaking of the work of the Central Elections Committee whose members are made up of representatives of all parties, Melcer said that they all worked with true professionalism. He was not sure that their parties would be appreciative of  them, but from a professional standpoint, they worked above and beyond the call of duty, he said.

Alluding to the fact that Rosh Hashana, the Jewish New Year is a time for introspection and apology for sins and slurs against others, Melcer said that those who need to apologize – "and there are those that do" should apologize. Using the Hebrew adage v'hameivin meiven the English untranslated equivalent of which is – if the cap fits wear it, Melcer urged all those who need to apologize to do so, and those who receive an apology to be forgiving.

Rivlin, who related to events of the past week in which political factions met with him for consultation as did Likud and Blue and White leaders Benjamin Netanyahu and Benny Gantz (who met with him again for dinner on Wednesday night), said that the President's Residence became a true symbol of the nation's democracy.

He had high praise for the Central Elections Committee and its chairman, and commented that those laws which are outmoded need to be amended.


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