Knesset Opposition to Greet Netanyahu's Cabinet With Filibuster Follies

Opposition prepares hundreds of motions, goal being to ridicule the new coalition so badly it abandons bill to expand the cabinet.

Jonathan Lis
Jonathan Lis
The Knesset plenum. Even if an opposition MK's bill makes it this far, it's likely to fall in the vote.
The Knesset plenum. Even if an opposition MK's bill makes it this far, it's likely to fall in the vote.Credit: Emil Salman
Jonathan Lis
Jonathan Lis

Zionist Union, Yesh Atid and Meretz are planning to submit hundreds of objections and alternative proposals to the bill, which passed its initial vote Monday night, that would change the Basic Law – Government so that it would permit more than 18 ministers. The factions hope the filibuster, which includes many bizarre objections and alternative bills, will exhaust the coalition and force it to abandon the bill.

Meretz, for example, will propose that the Basic Law – Government be changed to the “law to fortify Netanyahu’s government.” Meretz has also proposed an addendum to the clause that would once again permit ministers without portfolios to be appointed; the addendum states that such a minster “can do whatever he wants with no ministerial responsibility.”

Yesh Atid, whose chairman, MK Yair Lapid, was behind the original change in the law that now limits the number of ministers to 18, is proposing that the goal of the law be changed to “making it possible, through increasing the number of ministers, to employ as many people close to the members of the Likud Central Committee and major vote-contractors as possible, so that in the next election those future ministers will keep their places or, alternatively, upgrade themselves in the 21st Knesset.”

Zionist Union proposed that a minister without portfolio be chosen “as long as he obeys Netanyahu.” Zionist Union also proposed substituting the word “‘job” for “government.”

In another proposed addition to the bill, Zionist Union suggested that Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s home in Caesarea be designated “only for close guests.”

Zionist Union also proposed that a timeframe be cited for application of the law, “unless [Habayit Hayehudi chairman Naftali] Bennett has placed his cellphone in flight mode, in which case it will be extended by one week.”

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