MK Miki Zohar (Likud), head of the Knesset Control Committee, said Sunday that even if a law to disband the Knesset was passed on its first reading Wednesday, he would hold it up in committee. “As long as the current security situation in Gaza is not resolved, I will not allow discussions on the disbanding of the Knesset.”
Yisrael Beytenu, which recently quit from the coalition when party head Avigdor Liberman resigned as Defense Minister last week, said Sunday that it plans to revive the law, which was approved for a Knesset vote two years ago, to disband the plenum – the result of which would be elections within 90 days. The vote on the Yisrael Beytenu law is set to take place Wednesday, but other parties, including Zionist Camp and Meretz, plan to set forth their own laws on the matter.
A law to disband the Knesset is seen as having a greater chance of passing than a vote of no-confidence in the government, as the coalition still has 61 members, and it’s unlikely that any of the coalition partners would want to be seen as being directly responsible for the fall of the government. With that, several such motions will be advanced in the Knesset Monday, with no-confidence motions to be filed by Zionist Camp, Meretz, and United Arab List.
Zohar said that his stance was based not on politics, but security. “I call on all MKs and the government to put aside their political differences and concentrate on the issues that truly matter, the security of the state. The good of the country is worth much more than the desire of any party to achieve one or two more seats, which is the best any party will do in new elections, according to polls,” Zohar said. “We have had enough of populism, the main issue now is security.”
In response, Meretz said that if Zohar does try to bury the law in committee and refuses to let it advance to its second and third reading, the party would file a lawsuit with the High Court. “We need to introduce Miki Zohar and those backing him to democracy,” said Meretz MK Issawi Frij. “In a democracy a committee chairperson does not hold up a vote because of false security issues that do not exist. If things are quiet enough that elections can take place in towns in the Gaza border area, as they are this week, things are quiet enough to prepare for elections in all of Israel.”