IDI Leadership Says the Bill, ‘Harms the Principles of Separation of Powers and Freedom of Expression, as well as the Relationship Between the State of Israel and its Arab Minority ‘
Today, the MK Expulsion Bill will be brought to the Knesset plenum for its third and fourth reading. The bill is an amendment to the Basic Law on the Knesset, which will enable the expulsion of a legally elected MK from Knesset by a vote of 90 out of 120 MKs.
Throughout the months-long debate on this bill, it was called the MK Suspension Bill. However, in between its second and third readings in the Knesset, the proposed legislation was amended to allow the expulsion, and not just the suspension, of an MK.
IDI scholars have criticized the bill since its inception several months ago. Today, the bill is expected to pass.
“This bill turns the Parliament, a political body, into investigator, judge and jury, on the basis of a vague legal provision” explained IDI President Yohanan Plesner and Vice Presidents of Research Prof. Yedidia Stern and Prof. Mordechai Kremnitzer in a statement. “This dubious new mechanism, born out of a desire to expel Arab MKs from the Knesset because of their statements, harms the principles of separation of powers and freedom of expression, as well as the relationship between the State of Israel and its Arab minority. The bill is an expression of tyranny of the majority, which damages democracy as a system of government for all citizens.”
IDI leadership contends that the bill will tarnish the image of Israel as a free society, and cause grave damage to Israel’s international position and its relationships with other democracies.
In an op-ed first published by the Jerusalem Post, IDI’s Dr. Amir Fuchs explains: “The Knesset is a political body that does not have the legal expertise to establish facts and draw legal conclusions. Neither does it have the resources to interrogate witnesses, hear evidence and assess them. In addition, MKs will inevitably allow populist political and electoral considerations to influence their decisions.”
THE THIRD AND FOURTH READING WILL OCCUR LATER TODAY.
IDI RESEARCHERS ARE AVAILABLE FOR INTERVIEWS.