‘Pass judicial reform or coalition won’t survive’, MK warns Netanyahu

‘The legal reform will pass,’ said MK Simcha Rothman. ‘It is necessary for the survival of the coalition.’

By World Israel News Staff

MK Simcha Rothman (Religious Zionism) said that judicial reform legislation must be passed during the Knesset’s summer session, which began today, and that should the overhaul fail to come to fruition, the right-wing coalition led by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu will likely collapse.

“The reform is still as necessary as it was on the first day” it was introduced to the Knesset, Rothman said in an interview with Ynet. “It is urgent… and I think the public that attended the protest on Thursday wants a deadline… it is impossible to leave the State of Israel in this limbo.”

Rothman, a legal scholar and chief proponent of the reform who drafted much of the legislation alongside Justice Minister Yariv Levin (Likud), said that the public was “frustrated” with the lack of progress regarding the overhaul.

Acknowledging recent surveys that have shown the right-wing parties plunge in popularity, Rothman attributed the poor polling to the coalition’s choice to pause the overhaul and negotiate with the opposition parties.

“Stopping the legislation destroyed value for the right-wing government, but as soon as we get back on track, the [support from the public] will go up,” he said.

Some critics have speculated that Netanyahu is willing to abandon the overhaul legislation or agree to a softer version of the reform that would not be effective in changing the judicial system.

But Rothman hinted Netanyahu’s coalition partners would not tolerate a watered-down reform or perpetual stalling.

“The legal reform will pass,” he added. “It is necessary for the survival of the coalition.”

Rothman noted that the issue of reform “did not start four months ago” and said he had been looking into the issue for over a decade.

“It’s not something new. In the last few months, [the initiative] went into overdrive, and today, God willing, there is an almost complete consensus that a fundamental reform within the judicial system is necessary. This reform will happen.”