Jewish Home Party to Defy PM on Override Bill Delay

Minister of Education and chairman of the Jewish Home party Naftali Bennett. (Marc Israel Sellem/Pool)

Jewish Home leaders said on Thursday that they will not agree to any further delays on consideration of the controversial bill to empower the Knesset to override the High Court on constitutional issues.

Justice Minister Ayelet Shaked’s office said that the Ministerial Committee for Legislation — which she chairs — will hold a vote on it Sunday, despite a request from Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu to hold off, according to Hadashot.

Last week, Shaked and Jewish Home chairman and Education Minister Naftali Bennett, gave in and agreed to postpone the vote for a week to allow Netanyahu to meet with Court president Esther Hayut.

But the quest for a compromise that would satisfy both the judiciary and the right-wing has so far proved fruitless, coalition sources were quoted as saying, and Bennett and Shaked want to get on with it.

Bennett said he wouldn’t wait any longer: “The paragraph of overcoming [“override”] is required to govern the government and to maintain trust in the court. It is also an essential means of fighting terrorism and removing illegal infiltrators from Israel. It’s time to decide,” Bennett said.

“Therefore, on Sunday, we will bring up the Override Clause, and we expect the Prime Minister’s support, as promised by his signature [in the coalition agreement] and as promised to the Israeli public. ”

Later, on Thursday night, the Likud responded that Bennett and Shaked had failed to take the prime minister’s heavy official responsibilities into consideration:

“Any reasonable person understands that last week the prime minister dealt with matters of paramount importance to the security of the state,” the party said in a statement.