Israel’s Blue and White (Kahol Lavan) party is preparing to introduce a bill that prevents indicted ministers from serving as prime minister, Israeli media reported yesterday.
Blue and White leader Benny Gantz confirmed that his party was working to mobilize the Knesset majority to support this law, targeting Likud leader Benjamin Netanyahu, according to The Times of Israel.
BREAKING: In a dramatic new twist, Benny Gantz and his Blue and White party are now pushing to pass a law that would prohibit an indicted person from serving as Prime Minister. Theoretically possible, as opposition has 62 seats. But is it legal? Fair? https://t.co/3svXr9035r
— Joel C. Rosenberg (@JoelCRosenberg) March 4, 2020
Netanyahu and his allies received 58 seats following Israel’s election on Monday, leaving his right-wing union in need of three more seats before it achieves the 61 seats necessary to head the government.
Gantz proposed this law after the September elections – which saw political parties unable to form a coalition which would meet quorum – but it was opposed by Yisrael Beiteinu leader Avigdor Lieberman. Sources told the Times of Israel that Lieberman is likely to support the law this time.
— Palestine Chronicle (@PalestineChron) March 3, 2020
In 2008, Netanyahu himself supported such law when then Prime Minister Ehud Olmert was facing corruption charges. The law did not go ahead as Olmert resigned before the charges were filed.
Attorney General of the Israeli Government Avichai Mandelblit filed indictments against Netanyahu in January, making it the first time in Israel’s history that a serving prime minister was indicted on criminal charges.
Netanyahu filed an immunity request to the Knesset but later withdrew it. His court case is due to begin on March 17.
(MEMO, PC, Social Media)