Mixed reactions on the Right toward new Supreme Court justices

Ayelet Shaked said it would be proven over time that the new judges selected would make the court more conservative.

Supreme Court President Esther Hayut addresses the Bar Association conference in Eilat, May 31, 2021 (photo credit: SPOKESPERSON FOR THE BAR ASSOCIATION)
Supreme Court President Esther Hayut addresses the Bar Association conference in Eilat, May 31, 2021
(photo credit: SPOKESPERSON FOR THE BAR ASSOCIATION)

The Judicial Selection Committee on Monday appointed four new Supreme Court justices to the Supreme Court, reordering the 15 justice body which sits atop the judicial branch.

The four are Judge Khaled Kabuv, Judge Ruth Ronen, Judge Gila Kanfei-Steinitz and private-sector lawyer Yechiel Kasher.

Politicians on the Right reacted differently to the selection of the four new judges, including Kabuv who is the first-ever permanent Muslim Arab judge.

Finance Minister Avigdor Liberman said Kabuv's ethnicity is irrelevant.

"It goes by experience and ability, not religion," Liberman said. "It doesn't matter if he is Christian, Muslim or Jewish."
 FINANCE MINISTER Avigdor Liberman: Four catalysts behind the chaos. (credit: YONATAN SINDEL/FLASH90) FINANCE MINISTER Avigdor Liberman: Four catalysts behind the chaos. (credit: YONATAN SINDEL/FLASH90)

But Religious Zionist Party leader Bezalel Smotrich warned that the Court will be more activist, due to what he called the "shameful failure" of current Justice Minister Gideon Sa'ar and former justice minister Ayelet Shaked to bring more conservative judges.

Shaked said that if she headed the committee, more conservative judges would be selected. But Smotrich responded, "You cannot mislead all people, all the time."

In a post on Facebook, Shaked said it would be proven over time that the new judges selected would make the court more conservative.

Religious Zionist Party MK Simcha Rothman, who was on the selection committee with Sa'ar and Shaked,  said all the judges he recommended were rejected.

"You decided to let the Supreme Court remain the private domain of one closed clique that only advances people like them," he lamented.

Labor leader Merav Michaeli praised the judges that were chosen and took credit for ensuring that two of the four would be women. Michaeli, who almost prevented the government from being formed to insist on Labor being represented on the judicial selection committee, said her insistence bore fruit.