Photo Credit: Hillel Maeir/TPS
MKs David Bitan and Yoav Ben Tzur (Archive: December 28, 2015)

By Andrew Friedman/TPS

The Ministerial Committee for Legislation pushed off deliberations, scheduled for Sunday, on all pending legislation for a week after coalition partners could not agree on a formula to approve Likud MK Dudi Amsalem’s initiative to legally prohibit police from pursuing criminal investigations of a sitting prime minister. Amsalem had previously amended the bill to limit a prime minister’s term in office to two terms, or eight years, at the behest of Kulanu Party Chairman Moshe Kahlon.

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The decision to push off deliberations on the bill, known as the French Law because it is modeled on similar legislation in France, followed a verbal clash between Justice Minister Ayelet Shaked, who insisted that coalition partners needed time to debate the measure, and Coalition Chairman David Bitan, who wanted discussion on the measure to begin today.

Israel Broadcast Corporation (Kan) quoted Shaked, who told Bitan “This is a basic law, you can’t just push it through without each party discussing it amongst themselves.”

To which Bitan responded, “Fine, if you don’t want to ratify the bill, don’t.”

Earlier Sunday, Kulanu MK Rachel Azaria Tweeted that the measure would do violence to the principle of the rule of law, and would put the prime minister above the law.

“This bill would send a message to the public that corruption is legitimate,” Azaria said. “I’d have a hard time supporting this measure.”

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