This position paper comes in response to a seemingly emerging compromise between the coalition and opposition, ahead of a meeting of the Judicial Selection Committee on 14 June 2023. Described in the media as a possible “agreement” reached by the sides at the talks in the Presidential Residence in Jerusalem, it consists of acceptance of the government’s demand to appoint judges on its behalf to the Supreme Court in exchange for awarding the opposition a representative in the committee.
Zulat’s position is that the opposition’s representatives must not compromise on the issue of the Judicial Selection Committee:
- Appointing judges chosen by the government will represent a total politicization of the Supreme Court and lead to a loss of public trust in the institution.
- It will lead to the politicization of all courts, not just the Supreme Court.
- Such judges might espouse extreme conservative positions and actually implement the principles of the regime revolution even if its legislation by the Knesset is still incomplete.
- Such appointments will increase corruption.
- The impact of politicians controlling the Supreme Court is much more dramatic in Israel than in the United States. The Supreme Court in Israel has the final say (whereas in the United States, individual states may enact their own legislation to protect rights abolished by the federal Supreme Court).
- The government wants to determine the identity of the judges who will hear the petitions against the regime revolution.
- Already now, the fact that the Justice Minister refuses to convene the Judicial Selection Committee until “agreement” is reached on the appointment of judges by the government is an abuse of his power and a violation of the public interest.