Netanyahu, Gantz Parties Announce Legislation Freeze After Coalition Shows Cracks

Jonathan Lis
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Benny Gantz (L) and Benjamin Netanyahu, June 2020.
Benny Gantz (L) and Benjamin Netanyahu, June 2020.Credit: Ohad Zwigenberg
Jonathan Lis

In spite of the continuing confrontations between Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's Likud and Alternate Prime Minister Benny Gantz's Kahol Lavan, the two main coalition partners have agreed not to advance any legislation next week that does not concern the coronavirus crisis.

On Friday, Justice Minister and chairman of the Ministerial Committee on Legislation Avi Nissenkorn from Kahol Lavan, and his deputy on the committee, Likud lawmaker David Amsalem, announced the decision.

In recent votes in the Knesset, the two parties have broken coalition lines on two bills. Likud lawmakers – with the support of Netanyahu – voted in favor of a bill that would have established a parliamentary commission of inquiry into Supreme Court judges’ conflicts of interest. Kahol Lavan and Labor lawmakers voted in favor of a bill banning psychologists from performing so-called conversion therapy on LGBTQ people.

One of bills that were to be brought forward this week would have allowed the Knesset to override decisions of the Supreme Court. The decision not to bring this bill before the Ministerial Committee on Legislation will not prevent its sponsor, lawmaker Ayelet Shaked from the right-wing Yamina party, from bringing it up for a vote in the Knesset. As coalition lawmakers will not be allowed to vote on the bill, it is unclear whether Shaked will postpone the vote or attempt to challenge coalition integrity.

Amsalem said last week that he would block the advancement of bills that do not concern the coronavirus crisis as punishment for Kahol Lavan's support of the conversion therapy bill. It turned out, however, that Benny Gantz's block had almost no bills scheduled for vote next week.

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