Due to coronavirus, Blue and White vows distance voting

If a permanent solution is found for distance voting, it could also solve the problem that MKs are not given maternity or paternity leave.

Blue and White leader Benny Gantz (L) and Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu (C) sit in an empty hall in front of President Reuven Rivlin and Knesset Speaker Yuli Edelstein at the swearing in of the 23rd Knesset, March 16, 2020 (photo credit: HAIM ZACH/GPO)
Blue and White leader Benny Gantz (L) and Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu (C) sit in an empty hall in front of President Reuven Rivlin and Knesset Speaker Yuli Edelstein at the swearing in of the 23rd Knesset, March 16, 2020
(photo credit: HAIM ZACH/GPO)
The Knesset is working on a solution for its seven MKs who are in quarantine that would allow them to vote this week.
According to the tentative plan, the MKs would be brought to the Knesset in an isolated car, and they would vote separated from all people. One possibility is to have them vote behind plastic screens.
But Knesset officials said they had to find a more permanent solution, so the Knesset will be ready for the possibility of MKs contracting the coronavirus.
Blue and White faction chairman Avi Nissenkorn said that if he becomes head of the Knesset Arrangements Committee on Monday, as expected, he would initiate laws to enable voting from outside the building. Blue and White MK Izhar Shai, who has worked for many years in hi-tech, said zoom should be used for voting.
Deputy Finance Minister Itzik Cohen (Shas) became the latest MK to enter home quarantine on Sunday, his office reported. He was in the presence of a person who contracted the coronavirus and so placed himself in quarantine under the Health Ministry's instruction until March 28. 
Cohen is the fifth MK from Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's right-center bloc in quarantine, joining ministers Tzachi Hanegbi (Likud), Arye Deri (Shas), Bezalel Smotrich (Yamina) and Shas MK Moshe Abutbul.
The only quarantined MKs from the left-center bloc are Blue and White's Alon Shuster and Ram Ben-Barak. Shuster wrote on social media on Sunday that he should be allowed to vote.
If a permanent solution is found for distance voting, it could also solve the problem that MKs are not given maternity or paternity leave. Meretz MK Tamar Zandberg gave birth to a baby girl named Rachel last month. Blue and White MK Merav Cohen is eight months pregnant.
Hagay Hacohen contributed to this report.


Tags quarantine