populist legislation

Publications Regarding populist legislation


Press Release

Populism and its Implications for Democracies: Summary

International Experts Gather at IDI to Debate Populism and its Implications for Democracies as Israeli Electoral Deadlock Continues


Judicial Review Under Review

Israel’s judiciary is under assault, according to some, or experiencing a necessary corrective to rampant judicial activism, according to others. Dr. Amir Fuchs, legal expert and the head of the Defending Democratic Values project at the Israel Democracy Institute, walks through the Knesset’s attempt to change the judiciary and the balance of powers in Israel, what’s behind it, and what it means for the country.


Human Rights in an Age of Populism

The story of liberal democracies in the late 20th and early 21st centuries has been, to a large extent, the story of protecting personal liberties by independent democratic institutions.


The Return of the Override Clause? A Dangerous and Unnecessary Step

Laws define the legal rules of our democracy and ensure the stability of the political system while guaranteeing individual rights and general public interest - enactment of the Override Clause would seriously undermine this balance.


Parliamentary Work Index for Israel’s Political Parties

A Special Analysis by the Israel Democracy Institute on which MKs make the most use of the parliamentary tools available to them.


The Nation State Bill is a Constitutional Abandonment of Diaspora Jewry

This bill is superfluous and will do far more harm than good. In its newly revised version, the Nation-State Bill, which has been problematic since its inception, reaches new lows by effectively abandoning Diaspora Jewry. 

IDI Scholars’ Statement Ahead Of Tomorrow’s Discussion on V-15 Bill

It is important to require transparency, not to limit contributions, and to establish an effective and equal process of oversight

Press Release

Israel Democracy Institute Scholars Ahead of Today's Expected Vote on the NGO Bill:

Ahead of the discussion and expected vote on the NGO Bill today by the Knesset Law and Constitution Committee, Israel Democracy Institute scholars came out against the bill's progression and the members of Knesset who plan on pushing it through. 


MK Suspension Bill: Anti-Democratic to the Core

Last week, the Knesset Law, Constitution and Justice Committee began deliberating over a proposal that would fundamentally alter the Basic Law – The Knesset: The MK Suspension Bill. If passed, the proposed bill would grant members of Knesset the power to remove another parliamentarian. This op-ed originally appeared in the Jerusalem Post.


Turning Research into Action

IDI experts analyze challenges to Israel’s democratic values and institutions and work with decision-makers to implement concrete
proposals to strengthen Israeli democracy.


A Four-Step Plan to Combat Hatred between Jews and Arabs in Israel

IDI Research Fellow Yair Sheleg outlines four steps that can allay fears, contribute to dialogue, combat hatred, and improve relations between Jews and Arabs in Israel


Banning Arab Workers: A Hypocritical Condemnation

The mayor of Ashkelon's announcement following the massacre in a Har Nof synagogue that Arab workers would not be employed in his city was roundly condemned by members of the Knesset. Dr. Amir Fuchs points to the hypocrisy of these condemnations.

Policy Statement

Legal Opinion on the Israel Hayom Law

A summary of a legal opinion opposing the "Law for the Advancement and Protection of Print Journalism in Israel," which would prohibit the distribution of a full-sized daily newspaper in Israel free of charge.


A Red Alert for Israeli Democracy

In the midst of Operation Protective Edge, IDI President Yohanan Plesner warns of the dangers of racism, incitement, and stifling of free speech and asserts that it is essential to internalize a substantive democratic culture. 


Zero Tax, Zero Logic

Attorney Amir Fuchs argues that the proposed legislation that would exempt first-time home-buyers from value added tax (VAT) violates the principle of equality for people who do not serve the State of Israel. 


Price Tag Attacks: Racist Crimes

In an article in <em>Haaretz</em>, Attorney Amir Fuchs stresses the need to wage a genuine war against racism, in order to preserve the values of Zionism and safeguard the Jewish and democratic state.

Press Release

2014 Israeli Independence Day Mini-Survey

87% of Jewish Israelis Celebrate Yom HaAtzmaut as a Holiday, 68% of Arab Israelis Do Not

Majority of Israeli Jews Support Reducing Gov't Support for Institutions Which Mark Israeli Independence Day as the “Nakba”

Press Release

AIPAC Lay Leadership Institute Class briefing

IDI hosted the first ever AIPAC Lay Leadership Institute Class for a briefing on "Israeli Democracy in Action."


Human Rights under Attack

IDI Researcher Attorney Amir Fuchs discusses two indirect threats to human rights in Israel: attacks on the Israeli Supreme Court and attacks against Israeli human rights organizations.


The Contributors to the State Bill: Contributing to the Jewish-Arab Divide

Prof. Mordechai Kremnitzer and Att. Talya Steiner warn that the veteran's benefit bill, which is intended to extend benefits to those who have contributed to the State, discriminates against Israel's Arab citizens, who are exempt from military service in Israel.


The Return of McCarthyism—In Israel

In an op-ed in Haaretz, IDI researcher Attorney Amir Fuchs shares his thoughts on the proposed "NGO bill," which would limit donations to human rights organizations in Israel.


An Anti-Zionist Law

In an op-ed in Haaretz, IDI Researcher Attorney Amir Fuchs warns that the proposed Basic Law: Israel as the Nation State of the Jewish People is not only anti-democratic but also undermines the foundations of Zionism.


The Veterans Benefits Bill: Legal License to Discriminate

Prof. Mordechai Kremnitzer and Attorney Talya Steiner warn that the proposed veterans benefits bill, which would give preferential treatment in employment, higher education, and housing to those who have served in the Israeli army, gives license to discriminate against Israel's Arab minority.


What About Democracy?

In an op-ed published in Haaretz, IDI Vice President Mordechai Kremnitzer and researcher Attorney Amir Fuchs point out that despite the assault on democratic values witnessed in the outgoing Knesset, "democracy" does not seem to be on the agenda in the current election campaign.


License to Discriminate: A Jewish and Undemocratic State

A bill entitled "Basic Law: Israel – The Nation State of the Jewish People" is currently being considered by the Knesset. Although it was sponsored by a large number of Knesset members from a both the coalition and the opposition, the bill is controversial as it may disrupt the delicate balance between the "Jewish" and "democratic" identities of the State of Israel. In this op-ed, IDI Vice-President Prof. Mordechai Kremnitzer and Researcher Adv. Shiri Krebs argue that the bill is unnecessary and counterproductive to the goal of a Jewish and democratic Israel. 


Requiem for the 18th Knesset

Upon the announcement of early elections, IDI researcher Dr. Ofer Kenig reviews the performance of the 18th Knesset and wonders how it will be judged by history.


The Fruit of a Poisonous Tree

Israeli politicians deemed the attack of a group of Arab teens by a group of Jewish teens to be the act of "bad apples" who don't represent the norm. In the following op-ed, however, IDI researcher Attorney Amir Fuchs warns that the radicalization of Israeli youth is the fruit of a poisonous tree being cultivated in the Knesset itself.


A Jewish and Undemocratic State?

The proposed "Basic Law: Israel – The Nation State of the Jewish People" has the support of one third of the members of Knesset. In this op-ed, which was originally published in Hebrew in Yedioth Ahronoth, IDI Vice President of Research Prof. Yedidia Z. Stern, who is deeply committed to the Jewish nature of the State of Israel, warns that the shift from defining Israel as a "Jewish and democratic state" to a "Jewish state with a democratic regime" is not a semantic shift, but a seismic change.  


The Democratic Year in Review: The Knesset's Missed Opportunity

The period of the Jewish High Holidays is a time of reflection and introspection. In this op-ed, originally published in Yedioth Ahronoth on September 26, 2011, IDI Vice President of Research Prof. Yedidia Z. Stern reflects on the gap that emerged between the agenda of the Knesset and the agenda of the Israeli public during 2010-2011 and expresses hope that the message of the social-economic protest of the summer of 2011 will point the Knesset in the right direction in the year to come.


Ben-Gurion and Jabotinsky are Turning in their Graves

The text of an ad placed by IDI in three major Israeli newspapers soon after the Knesset passed the Anti-Boycott Law and just before its vote on legislation that would mandate investigations of human rights organizations, calling on Israel's legislature and judiciary to defend Israeli democracy from an onslaught of irresponsible legislative initiatives.


Say No to the Boycott Bill

In an op-ed in Maariv, IDI Vice President of Research Prof. Mordechai Kremnitzer and IDI Researcher Attorney Amir Fuchs explain why the "Bill to Prevent Harm to the State of Israel Through Boycotts” poses a serious threat to freedom of expression in Israel.


The Nakba Bill: A Test of the Democratic Nature of the Jewish and Democratic State

The “Nakba Bill” would impose financial sanctions on institutions that commemorate Israel’s Independence Day as a day of mourning. In this op-ed from the Ynet website, IDI’s Prof. Mordechai Kremnitzer and Adv. Amir Fuchs warned that while observing Israel’s Independence Day as a day of mourning by citizens of the State of Israel is “a galling, unpleasant, and defiant act,” the test of a true democracy is whether it is able to allow such expressions of freedom of speech.


Time to Step Up for Democracy

A number of controversial bills recently tabled in the Knesset undermine basic constitutional values, add fuel to the international assault on Israel's legitimacy, and may end up damaging Israel's democratic character. In an article in The Jerusalem Post, IDI Former President and Founder Dr. Arye Carmon and Vice Presidents Professors Mordechai Kremnitzer and Yedidia Z. Stern respond to these initiatives.


Clear-Cut Racism or Complicated Relationship?

Are the ostensibly anti-Arab bills under consideration by the Knesset, the “Rabbis’ Letter” that forbids the sale of real estate to non-Jews, and the findings of the 2010 Israeli Democracy Index clear-cut indicators that racism is on the rise in Israel today? Or are more complex factors at play? IDI Research Fellow Yair Sheleg shares his views on this matter.


Israeli McCarthyism?

In this op-ed article, IDI Vice President of Research Prof. Mordechai Kremnitzer and IDI researcher Adv. Shiri Krebs question the wisdom of forming a parliamentary commission of inquiry into the funding of Israeli human rights organizations. They warn against a slippery slope to McCarthyism and point out that the establishment of the commission, far from strengthening Israel’s legitimacy, will accelerate efforts to delegitimize Israel and prosecute Israeli officials overseas.


Implications of the 'Nakba Law' on Israeli Democracy

Prof. Mordechai Kremnitzer and Roy Konfino argue that the proposed 'Nakba Law,' which forbids public mourning of Israel's Independence Day, is anti-democratic, unconstitutional, and detrimental to freedom of expression and of peaceful demonstration in Israel.


Who's Afraid of a Jewish State with Equality for All?

A state that is proud of its identity has nothing to fear from granting all its citizens equality.