Ex-chief justice to update election campaign laws for the 21st century

Joubran says existing law outdated, archaic, overlooks Internet.

April 5, 2015 14:42
1 minute read.
 Salim Joubran

Supreme Court Judge Salim Joubran. (photo credit: screenshot)


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Justice Salim Joubran, chairman of the Central Elections Committee, appointed former Supreme Court president Dorit Beinisch on Sunday to lead a new committee to reform the law limiting election campaign advertisements.

The existing law, which was passed 56 years ago, prohibits campaigning through carrying torches or putting a spotlight on a building, among other things, but does not mention the Internet.

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Joubran called for a comprehensive reform in the law on campaign ads in his report following the election for the 20th Knesset, because, he said, some of its articles are “outdated and even archaic, and do not deal with the most common medium, the Internet.”

The committee was formed with President Reuven Rivlin’s blessing. Joubran and Rivlin discussed the possibility before the March 17 election, and the latter is pleased that the plan is moving forward, although he is not directly involved.

In Joubran’s report, he wrote that if the committee is backed by him and Rivlin, “there will be a greater chance that the necessary changes will be made.

“I am glad that the president agreed, and in his letter to me, he emphasized that, in his opinion, the law does not give up-to-date answers to the current reality and different questions that arise,” the justice continued. “This is a very important issue for running an election in a democratic society.”

Joubran called for the committee to include former politicians, academics, media experts and members of the Central Elections Committee, but said it is ultimately for Beinisch to decide the makeup of the panel.

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