‘Elkin law’ falls into embarrassment for government after president casts bad vote – .

‘Elkin law’ falls into embarrassment for government after president casts bad vote – .

The coalition suffered a humiliating setback on Thursday after the so-called “Elkin Law” was defeated at third and final reading because Knesset Speaker Mickey Levy accidentally voted against it.

The Knesset voted on the bill Thursday morning after an all-night marathon plenary session in which many opposition reservations to the bill were rejected.

But the final vote was 51-51, so the legislation was defeated.

This was followed by a consultation with a Knesset legal adviser who determined Levy’s vote could not count – and the law was not passed.

The “Elkin Law” was designed for Housing and Construction Minister Ze’ev Elkin to serve on the selection committee for rabbinical judges, following a clause in the coalition agreement between the New Hope Party of Elkin and Yesh Atid stipulating that the Minister of Housing – now Elkin – be appointed to the committee.
Ultra-Orthodox MPs and leaders welcomed the defeat of the bill.

Unified Torah Judaism MK Moshe Gafni said that “the government which was established by deception and which signs coalition agreements which have no inheritance in the God of Israel has no divine assistance. .

Shas leader MP Arye Deri said the opposition had broken the law because it had followed its instructions and received divine help to do so.

“I am so proud of the Shas deputies of a fight we fought day and night through thick and thin to overturn this offensive law of the rabbinical judges, and we deserved divine assistance for it,” said Deri.

Despite multiple requests for comment, Elkin has yet to explain why he is so eager to serve on the committee as legislation has been put forward to facilitate the request.

Committee members have significant patronage power, with political actors interested in advancing specific rabbinical candidates eager to curry favor with panel members.

A law passed in 2013 required that at least one of the two ministers and one of the two members of the committee be women, which created problems for Elkin, since the chair of the committee must be the minister of religious services, currently the deputy. Yamina Matan Kahana. .

Since Kahana and Elkin are both male, Elkin cannot claim his place on the committee under the current terms of the law.

A first draft of the government bill, which passed its first reading last month, amended the 2013 law so that instead of guaranteeing committee places for a woman minister and a woman MP, the the bill stipulated that at least two of the four representatives of the Knesset and the government should be women.

This meant that Elkin could serve alongside Kahana, while the two Representatives could both be Members of Parliament.

The opposition denounced the change, saying it would mean ultra-Orthodox parties could not have a representative on the committee since they do not have female MPs, and male MPs were excluded from the panel on the issue. basis of sex, a legal position in the Knesset. advisor agree with.

Thus, a new version of the legislation was proposed to the Knesset committee on Monday, in which the number of panel members would drop from 11 to 13, and would include a new minister of any gender.

That would free up a place on the committee for Elkin, as well as a second rabbinical court lawyer who would be appointed by the justice minister, currently Elkin’s party leader Gideon Saar.


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