Women's retirement bill jumps first hurdle

A bill proposed by MK Dalia Itzik (Kadima) to keep the retirement age for women at 62 was approved in its preliminary reading on Wednesday after, in a rare move, coalition chair MK Ze'ev Elkin (Likud) removed coalition discipline from a vote with serious budgetary ramifications that was proposed by the opposition.
Elkin announced the move after Culture and Sports Minister Limor Livnat, Knesset Committee on the Status of Women chairwoman MK Tzipi Hotovely (Likud), and MKs from every faction in the coalition said they would support the bill, even if it is counter to the government's original stance on the issue, and is opposed by Finance Minister Yuval Steinitz.
After the bill was approved, with 67 in favor and one opposed, Itzik said "this is a happy day for Israel's women, despite the Finance Ministry's intentions."