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March 6, 2015 / 15 Adar , 5775
At a Glance

Posts Tagged ‘baruch marzel’

High Court Rules Zoabi and Marzel Can Return to Election Race [election]

Wednesday, February 18th, 2015

Israel’s High Court has ruled that Israeli Arab candidate Balad MK Hanin Zoabi can run for re-election — despite her numerous statements, and actions, in support of terrorists from the Palestinian Authority.

In addition, the Court ruled Israel’s electoral authority must also allow Yachad candidate Baruch Marzel to run in the country’s national election on March 17 as well.

A panel of nine judges voted 8-1 in favor of reinstating both, with Deputy Supreme Court President Elyakim Rubenstein as the sole dissenting justice. The decision on the matter was moved up due to the proximity of the election.

Zoabi had been disqualified from running for the Balad Knesset seat by an overwhelming majority of the Central Elections Committee. This is the second time the High Court has overturned such a decision; a similar move took place just prior to the election of 2013.

Adalah NGO attorney Hassan Jabareen argued before the Court that all six statements attributed to the Balad MK that were used to disqualify her from running would “fall apart” once they were “placed into context.” Zoabi, he said, would be found to exhibit a record of consistent opposition to violence once her statements were examined, despite her statements in support of the Palestinian Authority.

Considering the law – and only the law – meant Zoabi’s recent six-month suspension by the Knesset also had no bearing on the case, he added. The MK’s recent visit to Qatar likewise was ruled a non-issue, inasmuch as Qatar is not considered an enemy state: Israel and Qatar actually do trade with each other.

Although the state described the MK’s conduct as “very troubling” it found that in principle it was forced to agree with Jabareen that there was no legal basis for her disqualification.

Nevertheless, attorney Yoav Mani, arguing for Yisrael Beytenu, warned the Court was setting the bar at an unreachable “high” in terms of the standard for evidence for disqualification. “When do you decide that enough is enough?” he asked. It was not about what the MK would do, Mani said – “say you’re against [her views] because they’re against who we are!”

Arguments for and against the disqualification of Baruch Marzel, candidate for the Yachad faction, were equally fierce.

Attorney Itamar Ben-Gvir argued – as had Zoabi’s lawyer – that Marzel’s statements had largely been taken out of context, and in some cases “he didn’t say them at all!”

He also contended that saying “Kahane was right” did not constitute a crime, nor did it violate the standard for election law violation. Marzel, once a member and leader in the banned “Kach” movement, had changed over the years, Ben-Gvir argued – but public and court opinion may not take that into account, with memory casting its long shadows back into the past instead.

A statement by Marzel made after an attack on a Jerusalem school that focuses efforts on co-existence was examined: the Court questioned its “anti-Arab” tone while Ben-Gvir said the intent was an expression of doubt that co-existence is possible today.

As with Zoabi, Rubinstein dissented, saying it seems likely Marzel has not changed at all. “If it walks and talks like a duck, why isn’t it a duck?” the judge asked.

Nevertheless, both candidates, seen as extremists by each others’ constituencies, are back in the race and will run for election with their parties on March 17.

Supreme Court to Decide Next Week on Zoabi and Marzel’s Eligibility

Tuesday, February 17th, 2015

The Supreme Court will rule next week on appeals by Knesset Member Hanin Zoabi and Baruch Marzel to overturn the Elections Committee decision to bar them from running in the elections.

One of the justices at the hearing Tuesday morning stated that the court generally does not get involved in politics, but there is a legal question concerning the authority of the Elections Committee.

It decided by a 27-6 vote to ban Zoabi from running because of incitement, and voted 17-16 to ban Marzel because of racism.

The worse possible court decision would be if the judges overturn only one of the petitioner’s eligibility. That is a virtual impossibility because the judges know that the public and political reaction would be catastrophic.

Allowing the Elections Committees decision also could be catastrophic for the future because it would set a precedent that political parties, who comprise the committee, can decide who is a racist and who incites.

Elections Committee Narrowly Votes to Ban Marzel’s Candidacy

Thursday, February 12th, 2015

The Elections Committee voted 17-16 on Thursday to ban right-wing activist Baruch Marzel from running for the Knesset as a candidate of the new Yachad party, headed by Eli Yishai.

Marzel was labeled a racist, but the narrow margin to toss him out of the elections contrasted with the 27-6 vote earlier in the day to ban Arab Knesset Member Hanin Zoabi from seeking re-election.

The United Arab List will appeal to the Supreme Court to overthrow the committee decision against Zoabi, and Marzel also is likely to appeal.

It will be surprising if the court does not overturn the committee decision. Once the committee has the authority to decide who is a terrorist and who is a racist, the Knesset might as well close down.

There have been grounds for jailing Zoabi for her anti-Israeli activities, but no one has had the political courage to do so.

Marzel is an easier target because right-wing extremists usually see the other side of prison before left-wing extremists. Marzel previously has been handed a suspended 12-month jail sentence.

He has reportedly called on the IDF to target left-wing Uri Avnery, who would have fallen off the left side of Planet Earth long ago if it were flat. Peace Now chairman Yariv Oppenheimer last year filed a complaint with police against Marzel for alleged death threats by Marzel’s followers.

Regarding homosexuals, he has said Israel should conduct a “holy war” against them.

Yachad has placed Marzel on the fourth spot in its list of candidates, guaranteeing him a seat in the Knesset if the party passes the minimum number of votes required for party representation.

The party jumped in the polls the past week. After having been on the borderline of entering the Knesset, surveys now indicate Yachad will win five seats, and one new poll released on Thursday rates it with six seats.

After the Election Committee decision, Marzel said, “The left-wing is gagging mouths. It has been proven that my positions are not racist. We are not afraid and will continue to act for the Land and People of Israeli and the Torah.”

He sounds like the national religious version of some Haredi MKs who know they speak for God, and his candidacy in the Yachad party  was blessed by several national religious rabbis pulling the strings behind the scenes.

If the leftists want “anyone but Bibi,” a select group of rabbis want “anyone but Naftali Bennett, who broke the taboo of the old-guard National Religious Party and brought secular nationalists into his new Bayit Yehudi (Jewish Home) party.

Election Committee Bars Arab MK Zoabi from Running for Knesset

Thursday, February 12th, 2015

The Central Elections Committee Thursday overwhelmingly against Arab Knesset Member Hanin Zoabi’s eligibility for running for election because of her association with terror.

The Joint Arab List, which includes Zoabi’s Balad party, will appeal the decision to the Supreme Court, where Zoabi stands a good chance of a ruling in her favor.

The 27-6 vote in the committee rejected arguments by the attorney-general that banning Zoabi would be an open invitation to the Supreme Court to get involved in the political process.

Weinstein also advised against disqualifying right-wing activist Baruch Marzel, whose candidacy with the Yachad party also has been appealed to the committee, which has not yet decided on his eligibility.

The opposition to Zoabi’s candidacy by the Herzog-Livni-led “Zionist Camp” party cemented her disqualification, which also was backed by delegates from the Bayit Yehudi (Jewish Home), Likud, Yisrael Beiteinu, Shas and Yachad parties.

Meretz and the Joint Arab List voted in favor of Zoabi.

The vote paved the way for similar action against Marzel, who later on the day also was disqualified.

Both Zoabi and Marzel, who is not a MK, have shown a proficiency for grabbing headlines. Zoabi is known for her nasty language against the IDF and right-wing Jews, and she also was onboard the Mavi Marmara boat in the flotilla led by IHH terrorists nearly six years ago to break the Israeli maritime embargo on Hamas terrorists in Gaza.

Marzel has been involved in stunts such as marching with an Israeli flag in the city of Umm el-Fahm, which also serves as the headquarters for the northern branch of the radical Islamic Movement.

Marzel and Yisrael Beiteinu chairman Avigdor Lieberman, along with the new Yachad party, petitioned the Election Committee to bar Zoabi from running.

The committee hearing was nothing less than a shouting match between Zoabi and hecklers, including Marzel, who jeered when she said Marzel and Lieberman “turned my nation into terrorists,” referring to her nation as “Palestinian.”

Yachad party chairman Eli Yishai shouted at Zoabi that she is a terrorist.

 

And the Right is Back

Thursday, December 25th, 2014

Former MK Michael Ben-Ari is back and running again for Knesset. His revamped party is now called Otzma Yehudit.

In the previous elections, Ben-Ari’s party, then called Otzma L’Yisrael, just missed passing the Knesset’s minimum threshold by 9000 votes. In this election, the minimum threshold for entry is even higher.

The new party is clearly trying to distinguish itself from Naftali Bennett’s Bayit Yehudi, and defines itself as the real Right – and saying that the right-wing doesn’t talk about “two-state solutions”.

They hope to push the point that Bennett isn’t a “real” right-winger, which interestingly enough, may work to Bennett’s benefit, as having a party to the right of Bayit Yehudi may make Bennett look even more moderate and appealing to a larger voter segment.

There is also talk of Otzma Yehudit wanting to join forces with Eli Yishai, but at this point it’s just talk.

Death to Terrorists

Friday, October 24th, 2014

Israelis protest at Jerusalem’s Ammunition Hill train platform where an Arab terrorist ran over a group of commuters, killing a 3 month old baby.

They are carrying signs, “Death to Terrorists”.

Knesset Passes Law that Drives Extremists to the Political Graveyard

Tuesday, March 11th, 2014

The Knesset passed into law on Tuesday a measure that will restrict representation in the legislature to parties that win at least 3.25 percent of the total vote, or approximately four seats.

If elections were held today and results were similar to recent polls, Kadima, headed by Shaul Mofaz, would be non-existent, and Tzipi Livni’s Tnuah party would either join it in the political graveyard or at best be standing at the edge of the cemetery.

The Arab parties will be forced to unite or disappear, and the likes of Baruch Marzel can kiss their Knesset futures goodbye. The only thing that could save Marzel, his cohorts Itamar Ben-Gvir and former Knesset Member Aryeh Eldad, would be another mass expulsion of Jews, God forbid.

The law passed by a 67-0 unanimous vote, which was astonishing on two counts. First, no one in the coalition voted against it, for the simple reason there are two other laws slated for a vote this week, and the coalition parties wisely agreed to join forces and support them all rather than risk a nasty fight on the floor and a strikeout.

The other astonishing event, even for Israel’s three-ring circus Knesset, is that the Opposition parties boycotted the vote even though the Opposition leader once supported the same legislation.

Opposition leader Yitzchak “Bogie” Herzog once supported the same proposal, but he complained on Tuesday that the coalition government is steamrolling the democratic process by staging three votes on major bills in one week, restricting a proper debate.

Labor should be renamed the Loser party, or perhaps the Crybabies party.

The other two votes this week are on the universal draft, which is aimed at the Haredim while leaving Arabs off the hook, and a bill to make part of the Basic Law a provision that any surrender of land under Israeli sovereignty would require a national referendum before a peace agreement could be concluded.

If the referendum bill passes, that means the Knesset cannot decide on its own to surrender one inch of land in all of Jerusalem and the Golan Heights as well as any other areas that Israel might annex in the future.

Tuesday’s vote was on what is called the “Governance Bill,” which not only increases the minimum vote needed for party representation in the Knesset, but also limits the size of the Cabinet to 18 ministers.

The number of votes a party needs to enter the Knesset is the most controversial part of the bill, and Jewish Home Knesset Member Nissan Slomiansky warned that it could backfire on some parties who are riding the crest of popularity today but forget that every day is topsy-turvy Purim in Israeli politics.

Slomiansky is a long-time veteran of the old National Religious Party, which won only three Knesset seats in the elections in 2006.

Meretz also once had only three seats, but it can be argued that the new limits will encourage some people to vote for a certain party. Even if they are not enthusiastic about a certain party, they might not want to see the party lose out altogether.

The previous threshold of 2 percent for party representation made a mockery of democracy, giving every weirdo a shot at succeeding in gaining 60,000 or so votes and becoming a legislator, even if the party’s platform is wacky or simply political impossible.

In many Western countries, the minimum required for seats in the legislature varies from 4 percent in Austria and Sweden to 5 percent in Belgium and Germany

In the last Israeli elections, the perennial Marijuana “Green Leaf” party won 13,000 voters who essentially threw their ballots in the garbage can.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/knesset-passes-law-that-drives-extremists-to-the-political-graveyard/2014/03/11/

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