Report: Opposition Plans to Hurt Netanyahu-Led Government

MK Ze’ev Elkin. (Yonatan Sindel/Flash90)

A plan is being worked on in the opposition-to-be, aimed at sowing chaos in the new Netanyahu-led government, according to a report in Maariv on Friday.

According to the report, two senior opposition MKs – secretary of the Yesh Atid faction, MK Boaz Toporovsky and the National Union Camp’s Ze’ev Elkin – a former Likud MK and Netanyahu ally – are drawing up a “Total War” plan which aims to disrupt the formation of the government during the legislative stages of the “Deri, Ben-Gvir and Smotrich laws.”

Shas leader MK Rabbi Aryeh Deri, Otzma Yehudit leader MK Itamar Ben-Gvir, and Religious Zionist Party leader MK Betzalel Smotrich have all pushed for the passage of laws prior to the formation of the new government which would ensure the fulfillment of key coalition agreements.

They include an amendment to the Basic Law: The Government, which would enable Rabbi Deri to serve as minister despite his recent conviction for tax crimes as part of a plea bargain; a law granting direct authority over the police department to the new National Security Minister, Ben-Gvir, and transferring authority over the Border Police to the National Security Minister; and legislation separating control over the Civil Administration which governs Area C of Yehudah and Shomron from the Defense Minister and placing it in the hands of a second minister within the Defense Ministry.

Officials cited in Friday’s report said the “Total War” includes a plan to stymie swift passage of these laws required before the formation of the new government, further delaying the new coalition’s establishment.

Prime Minister-designate Binyamin Netanyahu, whose mandate to form a government was to expire on Sunday, formally requested Thursday a two-week extension from President Yitzchak Herzog. A senior member of the outgoing government said that, “the [incoming] opposition has the tools to fight against the coalition’s rapacity.”

“We are preparing a painful surprise for them. Many [Knesset fights] await them, from lengthy discussions on the election of the new Speaker of the Knesset to those on the establishment of committees for preparing voting legislature for enacting laws, to talks on the laws themselves. We will make sure that every discussion lasts as long as possible.”

While the incoming coalition, with a 64-MK majority, is likely to pass the three laws, the new Opposition will attempt to filibuster each piece of legislation in a bid to draw out the process through Netanyahu’s entire two-week extension, forcing the new coalition to form a government without the passage of all these laws. This, in turn, could foment disunity within the new government.

“From the moment [outgoing Knesset Speaker] Mickey Levy leaves the Knesset Speaker’s dais, and the new Knesset Speaker takes the position, the Opposition will start to drag things out at every opportunity,” officials from the incoming Opposition said.

“We will make life difficult for them,” they promised.

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