Knesset speaker given okay to take spouse abroad

The Knesset House Committee unanimously passed a proposal last week clarifying the law that enables the Knesset speaker to take his spouse abroad on official visits, as the president, prime minister, and foreign minister do.
Knesset speakers had taken their spouses abroad for 60 years until former Knesset legal adviser Nurit Elstein ruled two years ago that the law was unclear. Following a Channel 2 report that accused Knesset Speaker Reuven Rivlin of taking his wife abroad in his first term in the post despite knowing about the ruling, he sued Channel 2, and he has not left the country since returning to the post in March 2009. Rivlin’s spokesman said the court case would be resolved soon, because Rivlin had proven that Elstein submitted the ruling after Rivlin’s first term in the post had ended.