Wednesday, July 20, 2016
What's Good For the Goose...
Yesterday, the Knesset finally passed a controversial bill into law that will allow Israeli lawmakers to expel a Member of Knesset who supports armed struggle against the State of Israel and/or incites racial hatred. The new law - which many assume is meant to target Joint Arab List MK, Hanin Zoabi - will require at least 90 of the 120 MKs to vote in favor of their colleague's removal.
The law passed by a margin of 62-47, but one has to wonder how such an obvious idea wasn't unanimously embraced and approved!
Not surprisingly, since it was a right wing coalition majority that passed the new law, many left wing MKs are calling it 'anti-democratic', and are bemoaning it as 'the death of Israeli democracy'.
Yet, interesting, the Israeli left had no problem whatsoever passing an amendment to the Israeli election law back in 1988 which had essentially the same intent; albeit to keep someone from entering the Knesset rather than creating a provision for removing them.
That 1988 amendment had the stated goal of barring Rabbi Meir Kahane's far-right Kach party from participating in that year's Knesset elections where polls predicted it would likely increase its Knesset representation from 1 to 3 (or maybe 4) seats.
The 1988 amendment codified into election law that a party could be prevented from participating in Knesset elections for even one of the following:
- Negation of the existence of the State of Israel as the state of the Jewish people
- Negation of the democratic character of the State
- Incitement to racism
While I don't think anyone would call me a Kahanist, I find it puzzling that none of our lefty lawmakers ever felt the need to invoke the above-mentioned amendment in order to ban Zoabi and her party from elections, since she has repeatedly and unequivocally met all three of these legal conditions.
So, to the Meretz and Zionist Union MKs who are currently bleating about this evil new law I say that, had you pushed for the fair and honest application of the election law amendment your predecessors passed back in the 80's specifically to block a far right party from entering the Knesset, the current right wing coalition government would have had no need to pass a new law to allow for the removal of a far left wing lawmaker who espouses anti-democratic / anti-Israel values.
Sadly, the Israeli far-left subscribes to a chillingly Orwellian worldview of fairness and entitlement where, under the law, some are more equal than others.
In a real democracy, what's good for the goose must be good for the gander.
Posted by David Bogner on July 20, 2016 | Permalink
I wonder if it really targeted Zoabi as such since, while nobody seems to be able to get her to control her mouth completely through multiple suspensions and regularly tossing her out of the meeting room, her constituency pretty much told her they were tired of her back in the May primaries for her party (along with several other grandstanding MK's from the party. She doesn't have a "realistic slot" so she's on the way out of the Knesset anyway. so if this law was aimed at her it was a waste of time). And Odeh was less than delicate about how pleased he was by the results. Apparently she has that effect on everyone). Not quite sure what this law was doing exactly. I think trying to set up something for the future that the Supreme Court won't dare mess with if they ever feel it nessecary to invoke. But yes, it could well be used differently than it was touted.
Posted by: Yehudit | Jul 20, 2016 4:19:52 PM
You're not aware of the hypocrisy of the left? Democracy is only good when they win the election. The people are only smart when they support them. Free speech for everyone... that agrees with them.
Posted by: Garnel Ironheart | Jul 20, 2016 8:29:33 PM
I think that if you gave a gander as much calcium as a goose requires, it would likely get kidney stones.
That said, doesn't Israel have treason laws under which MK Zoabi could be charged.
I am glad that this new law exists, just as I am happy about the transparency law.
Posted by: rich | Jul 21, 2016 7:21:07 AM