The contentious “Incapacitation Law,” which would bar the Attorney General from saying a Prime Minister is unfit for office, was approved by the Knesset in its second and third readings early on Thursday morning following a long night session.
Sixty-one people voted in favor of the measure, while 47 were against it.
According to the bill, a Prime Minister may only be deemed incompetent for office if they cannot perform their duties due to medical or mental illness, and then only with the approval of three-quarters of the Cabinet or the Prime Minister.
If the Prime Minister were to object to bringing the matter before the Cabinet, it would be decided by the Knesset, which would require the support of at least 90 MKs.
The new legislation is widely regarded as a response to concerns that the Supreme Court could order Netanyahu to resign due to the potential conflict of interest created by him supervising his coalition’s attempt to dramatically reform the judiciary while he is himself on trial for multiple corruption charges.
Netanyahu is accused of accepting pricey presents from supporters and trying to set up covert deals with media outlets to gain more favorable coverage. He is on trial on three counts of bribery, fraud, and breach of trust. He contests his guilt.
Yair Lapid, the opposition leader, criticized the coalition for passing the bill, writing on Twitter, “Like robbers in the night, the alliance just enacted an indecent and corrupt personal law against a baseless rumor of incapacitation.
Israel’s residents need to understand that Netanyahu is once again primarily concerned with his interests, especially now that the holidays are approaching and living expenses are soaring.
Avigdor Liberman, MK and chairman of the Yisrael Beytenu Party, declared that his group would file a case against the Supreme Court against the bill.
The Supreme Court will receive a petition from the Yisrael Beytenu faction asking it to strike down the Incapacitation Law.
Liberman declared on his Twitter page that we won’t allow the State of Israel to turn into a Netanyahu family monarchy.
Merav Michaeli, the head of the Labor Party in Israel, tweeted, “The coalition just passed the Incapacitation Bill.
A dishonorable bill whose sole intent is to stop Netanyahu from being found ineligible for office. With the personal laws and the coup, the coalition and this government are only doing this. Under a corrupt government, they sacrifice the State of Israel to provide for themselves.
We must prevail in this, our second war for independence.