'Failed gov't system prevented Tal Law replacement'

Current system must be changed, undermined Kadima's membership in coalition from day one, opposition leader says.

Kadima leader Shaul Mofaz 370 (photo credit: Marc Israel Sellem / The Jerusalem Post)
Kadima leader Shaul Mofaz 370
(photo credit: Marc Israel Sellem / The Jerusalem Post)
The failed system of government prevented Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu from replacing the “Tal Law” and led him to prefer sectorial interests over the majority, opposition leader Shaul Mofaz said on Wednesday.
The Tal Law, which expired on August 1, allowed ultra- Orthodox men to postpone military service indefinitely.
Three NGOs working to change the system of government, Yesh Sikuy, Citizen Empowerment Center – Israel and Save Israeli Democracy, presented their joint proposal for a new system of government to Mofaz and MK Yisrael Hasson (Kadima), who responded enthusiastically.
“Changing the system is necessary to guarantee governance and maintain the State of Israel’s democratic and Zionist character,” Mofaz said. “We cannot avoid making decisions on this issue.”
The opposition leader reiterated that one of the reasons Kadima joined the coalition in May was to create a new system of government with a wide consensus behind it.
“Unfortunately, from the beginning of the partnership [with the Likud], the political reality proved once again that the system of government in Israel is a failure, preventing the leading party from making courageous decisions about equality in the burden of military service despite wide public support,” Mofaz said.
According to Mofaz, Netanyahu is unable to make decisions because sectorial parties set his agenda, and “blackmail is stronger than governance, and sectors stronger than the majority.
“Just as he did not want to change the Tal Law, the prime minister is not interested in changing the system of government,” Mofaz added. “The fact that the prime minister did not discuss the topic even after Kadima left the coalition proves this beyond a doubt.”
Mofaz told Yesh Sikuy founder Prof. Uriel Reichman and Save Israeli Democracy leader Uri Dori that he would discuss their proposal at the next Kadima faction meeting, and ways to promote a bill on the issue.
The outline includes raising the election threshold from 2 to 4 percent, and having 60 of the 120 MKs elected regionally.
The Interior Ministry would determine the regions and voters would only put one slip in the ballot box – which would count for both the regional and the national vote.
The NGOs also called to authorize the prime minister to veto any bill, a power that could only be overridden by a vote of 61 MKs. The number of ministers would be no fewer than eight and no more than 16, and they could not serve simultaneously as MKs.