Knesset legal counsel: High Court good for Knesset

Eyal Yinon photo: Rafi Kotz

Adv. Eyal Yinon sees the government as a greater threat to the Knesset's status than the High Court of Justice.

Legal counsel to the Knesset Adv. Eyal Yinon, who has served in the post for eight years, is concerned about the government damaging the Knesset. "In general," Yinon says, "I think that the government presents a far greater danger to the status of the Knesset and its powers than does the High Court of Justice. In recent years, the court has more than once defended the Knesset as an institution, whether it was in the case of the petition by MK Stav Shaffir, thanks to which order was introduced into the whole subject of budget transfers, or the petition over the agreement with the gas exploration companies, when the government tried to bind the Knesset for a long period into the future and the High Court of Justice struck down this clause. Or in the context of the two-year budget as well, when the High Court of Justice halted the passage of the measure through a temporary amendment to a basic law."

How do you see the intention to introduce a "supersession clause" into the Basic Law: Human Dignity and Liberty, allowing the Knesset to reverse a High Court of Justice ruling that strikes down a law?

"In the past few days, there has been a great deal of discussion of different models for the supersession clause - the Canadian model, the British model - but if you look closely at the theoretical models, you see how impossible it is to divorce them from the political and legal culture of each country. In our reality, I think that in principle it would be a mistake to pass a supersession clause, whether it specifically concerns illegal immigrants or whether it is framed in general terms, and that it would do more harm than good. Good legislation requires restraint and balance, and as soon as, in effect, you remove constitutional review, that is liable to deal a severe blow to the quality of legislation and to the balances that must be maintained in it."

(This is an extract from a full-length interview in Hebrew, to be published in "Globes" Independence Day edition.) 

Published by Globes [online], Israel business news - - on April 16, 2018

© Copyright of Globes Publisher Itonut (1983) Ltd. 2018

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Eyal Yinon photo: Rafi Kotz
Eyal Yinon photo: Rafi Kotz
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