Attorney-General Gali Baharav-Miara on Sunday published a response to the Supreme Court calling for the repeal of a Basic Law by supporting the petitions against the reasonableness law passed by the Knesset in July.
In doing so, she is declaring war on the government she is paid to represent and risking sending Israel into an unprecedented constitutional crisis.
A hearing on eight petitions against the reasonableness bill, scheduled for September 12, will be deliberated by an unprecedented 15-judge panel. The bill revokes the reasonableness clause, which allowed Supreme Court justices to knock down any law passed by the Knesset as long as it is “reasonable” in their view – which lends them excessive power over the elected government, unparalleled in any democracy in the world.
Despite that fact, in her opinion, Baharav-Miara claims that striking down the reasonableness clause would be “a fatal blow to the foundations of the democratic regime.”
She wrote: “For the first time in the history of the State of Israel, the authority of the Supreme Court to hear and grant relief to the individual and the public, in accordance with its independent judicial discretion, was denied. The amendment closes the gates of the courts to any person or group, who were harmed by the fact that the government or one of its ministers acted against them in an extremely unreasonable manner, in any context.
“Due to the serious impact of the amendment on the public and its serious consequences for the separation of authorities, the rule of law, and the rights of the individual, this is an exceptional situation in which the amendment deals a fatal blow to the foundations of the democratic regime, so there is no other choice but to declare it null and void.”
(YWN Israel Desk – Jerusalem)