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Israel News

‘Elkin law’ passes first reading, again

CM 27/07/2021

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The so-called “Elkin Law” designed to get Housing and Construction Minister Ze’ev Elkin onto the Selection Committee for Rabbinical Judges passed its first reading in Knesset for a second time, after it was defeated in its third reading earlier this month. 
The legislation seeks to add two members to the 11-member panel, including an extra minister, which would allow Elkin to take his place on the committee. 
But two weeks ago when the bill was brought for its third reading, Knesset speaker and coalition member MK Mickey Levy voted against the bill by accident tying the vote and meaning the legislation was defeated. 
To revive it, the coalition needed to bring the bill back for a first reading once again, and it will now go to committee to continue the legislative process. 
Several opposition MKs took to the Knesset podium to denounce the legislation for its overtly personal nature in seeking to have one specific individual, Elkin, appointed to the committee. 

“For years, the current coalition accused us of seeking to dole out jobs because we thought it was appropriate to aallow a mnister to bring his ownteam with him who would be committed to his success and that of the country,” said Likud MK, and former Elkin ally, Yariv Levin
“Now, in the height of impudence and hypocrisy you are not only passing a special jobs law increasing the committee and changing its make-up, but you are also doing it to create personal jobs. This hypocrisy is disgraceful, and this law is shameful, and this a precedent that unfortunately the state of Israel and Israeli citizens will pay for.”
Shas MK Yoav Ben Tzur also lambasted the personal nature of the bill, and said that trying to re-legislate it was like a “fool returning to his folly,” in reference to the defeat of the bill the first time around. 
“No one dares touch the Selection Committee for Judges or [the Selection Committee for] Qadis [Islamic judges] because God forbid what would happen, but here due to the whim of a specific man who wants to be on the committee you are turning the world upside down,” declared Ben Tzur. 
Intelligence Minister Elazar Stern defended the law from the podium, saying it would bolster the standing of the rabbinical courts. 
Elkin has declined numerous requests for interview by The Jerusalem Post regarding the law and why it is so important to him to get a place on the selection committee that the coalition is passing legislation to this end.

Source: Jerusalem Post

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