Israel's Knesset Approves Rotation Law After 15 Hours of Debate

Michael Hauser Tov
Michael Hauser Tov
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Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett and Foreign Minister Yair Lapid, July 2021.
Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett and Foreign Minister Yair Lapid, July 2021.Credit: Gil Cohen-Magen,AP
Michael Hauser Tov
Michael Hauser Tov

The Knesset gave its final approval to an amendment to the Basic Law of Government enabling the post of prime minister to rotate between Prime Minister Naftali Bennett and Foreign Minister Yair Lapid.

Under the coalition deal, Bennett will be prime minister for the first two years of the government’s term, and Lapid will hold the post for the final two years.

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During the vote, opposition members left the chamber in protest. Their many reservations were withdrawn as a result.

The law mandates two cases where Lapid will become prime minister before the scheduled date of August 27, 2023.

The first kicks in should the members of the prime minister’s party propose disbanding the Knesset in a bid to block the rotation.

The second kicks in should the Knesset not pass the 2023-2024 budget, in which case by law the Knesset is forced to disband.

During the debate, Religious Zionism MK Itamar Ben-Gvir was forcibly removed after refusing to call MK Ahmad Tibi “sir,” and instead calling him “terrorist.”

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