Netanyahu: With budget passed, judicial reform is next

Religious Zionism MK says that should compromise negotiations fail, “we will move forward unilaterally” with judicial reform legislation.

By World Israel News Staff

After prioritizing passing the 2023-2024 state budget and focusing on the recent Operation Shield and Arrow clash with Islamic Jihad in Gaza, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said he is now turning his attention to passing legislation aimed at reforming Israel’s legal system.

Speaking to Channel 14 News on Wednesday morning shortly after the final budget vote, Netanyahu stressed that passing judicial reform was “certainly” his government’s next goal.

But, Netanyahu stressed, Wwe are trying to reach a [compromise], and I hope we will succeed in this.”

Talks between coalition and opposition leaders regarding a compromise for judicial reform have been stalled for weeks, with both sides vehemently rejecting potential middleground frameworks that were leaked to the media.

In March 2023, after an unprecedented and likely illegal nationwide strike shuttered hospitals, businesses, and schools throughout the country, Netanyahu officially froze legislative efforts regarding the reform.

Following the two-month pause, Netanyahu signaled that he is ready to once again bring the issue to the forefront of his political agenda.

The architects of the reform, Justice Minister Yariv Levin (Likud) and Constitution and Law Committee Chair Simcha Rothman (Religious Zionism) have publicly said that further delays to the legislation could trigger them to resign from the coalition and topple the government.

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Speaking to Ynet last week, Rothman said that the opposition parties were not engaging in compromise negotiations in good faith, and that they are “determined to blow up” the discussions.

“If there are no agreements, if there is an explosion [and total breakdown in negotiations,] we will move forward unilaterally [with judicial reform legislation] in this Knesset session,” he emphasized.

Rothman stressed that “the distances between the parties are not great, and if the opposition wants to reach agreements – it can happen tomorrow morning.”

However, he reiterated his previous warning that no progress on the reforms could lead to the collapse of the government.

“A coalition that does not keep its promises does not survive,” he said.