Report: Israeli government and Opposition considering new compromise on judicial reform

Thorny issue of judicial selection committee, which picks new Supreme Court justices, addressed by new compromise; proposal currently under consideration by coalition and opposition parties, according to report.

By World Israel News Staff

A compromise regarding a change to the judicial section process – a central issue in the efforts to overhaul Israel’s judicial system – is currently being considered by the coalition and opposition parties, according to a report from radio station Kan Reshet Bet.

Proponents of the reforms have cited the Judicial Selection Committee – which chooses Supreme Court justices – as being a particularly problematic body.

At the moment, the majority of the committee’s members are current justices who are currently serving on Israel’s highest court, meaning that judges essentially pick their successors.

Reformists want to change the committee to include a greater number of serving MKs who have been democratically elected, changing the selection process to be more similar to that of the U.S.

Opponents of the reform have argued that allowing politicians to serve on the selection committee will mean that the court becomes inherently politicized.

But a current compromise reportedly under consideration from both sides would see lawmakers gain greater influence over the selection committee, without having politicians become a direct part of the process.

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The compromise would see both the coalition and opposition parties choose members of the committee, who are experts in relevant fields.

Lawmakers and Supreme Court justices could choose from senior attorneys, retired judges, academics, and legal scholars and researchers, then appoint them to the selection committee.

This would theoretically give greater representation to politicians, without having them serve on the committee themselves.

Appointments would be for set terms of several years, so that representatives would face less pressure to cater to the whims of the politicians that selected them.

However, the critical issue of whether coalition lawmakers could select the majority of the members of the committee has not yet been addressed.