Minister of Justice Ayelet Shaked is promoting a bill that will allow the appointment of judges to whom the judges of the Supreme Court are opposed, Channel 2 News reports. Four judges are due to be appointed to the Supreme Court in the coming weeks, and the selection will determine the character of the Supreme Court and the High Court of Justice for a long time to come, even decades.
Shaked wants all four new Supreme Court justices to be her choice and of her mind, and she therefore seeks to reduce the power of President of the Supreme Court Justice Miriam Naor and her colleagues in the selection process. This will be an extraordinary step, and it follows negotiations that have taken place over the past several weeks. Through Knesset Constitution, Law and Justice Committee member Robert Ilatov (Yisrael Beitenu), Shaked today submitted a bill to the Knesset that abolishes the need to obtain the consent of the sitting Supreme Court justices to new appointments.
Currently, any appointment requires a majority of seven of the nine members of the appointments committee, which is composed of representatives of the public, Supreme Court justices, and representatives of the Israel Bar Association. This means that, in effect, the Supreme Court justices have a veto on any appointment.
Under Shaked and Iliatov's proposal, an ordinary majority and not a special majority will suffice, so that Naor's support will not be required in order to make an appointment. Shaked seeks to exploit a rare situation in which the political right has a majority on the committee when the public representatives and the representatives of the Israel Bar Association are counted together.
Shaked informed Naor of her intention, and made clear that unless they reach an agreed solution then Naor will not have her way over the appointment of even two of the four new justices, and Shaked will see to it that all four will be her appointees. Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has also been kept up to date, and he has not expressed any objection.
Shaked has also stated recently that in her view the Attorney General has no veto power over government legislation, and that she seeks to abolish the search committee for the appointment of attorneys general.
Published by Globes [online], Israel business news - www.globes-online.com - on November 1, 2016
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