Amichai Shikli, who quit the Yamina party immediately after it formed a government with left-wing parties, was disqualified for running with the Likud party for the next Knesset by the chairman of the Central Elections Committee, Judge Yitzchak Amit, on Wednesday evening.
Amit based his decision on the fact that Shikli didn’t resign from the Knesset immediately after resigning from Yamina, which he says is required by Israel’s Basic Laws in order for the candidate to run for the next Knesset as part of a party that was in the outgoing Knesset.
Amit wrote: “Even after the Knesset committee determined that Shikli should be considered as someone who resigned from Yamina, he continued to act against the party. In this state of affairs, if we recognize him as someone who resigned ‘close to the time’ that he left his party, this will eliminate all significance to section 6a of the Knesset’s Basic Law and its underlying purpose, thereby harming the public’s trust in the ‘rules of the game,’ as established by the Knesset itself.”
The hearing was held in response to a petition submitted by the far-left Meretz party. Meretz also filed a petition against the candidacy of ex-Yamina MK Idit Silman, whose resignation from the coalition led to its downfall. However, Amit approved her candidacy to run for the next Knesset as part of the Likud party since she resigned from the government soon after leaving the party.
The Likud intends to petition the Supreme Court against the decision: “The Likud sees this absurd decision as a serious blow to democracy – we will appeal to the Supreme Court,” the party said in a statement.
The Supreme Court almost always overturns the decisions of the Central Elections Committee.
Shikli had previously appealed the Knesset committee’s decision to declare him as a defector from Yamina in the Jerusalem District Court. The court proposed a compromise as part of which Shikli would retire from the Knesset and be able to run in the elections – subject to the approval of the chairman of the Central Elections Committee.
Shikli agreed to the compromise and resigned from the Knesset in July but Amit now rejected the compromise that was accepted in the district court.
Political commentator Amit Segal commented on the absurdity of the fact that the only Yamina member who stuck to his party’s principles is considered the rebel.
“The fact that the only person who maintained the principles of Yamina is declared as a defector, while all the defectors who resigned from parties due to their own political interests can run to their heart’s content is an unparalleled distortion of justice,” he said.
— אריאל אלחרר (@ariel_elharar_) September 28, 2022
(YWN Israel Desk – Jerusalem)