New law would ban sitting MKs from defecting to the coalition

Amid efforts by rebel Zionist Union MK Robert Tivaev to join coalition, new law would ban lawmakers from 'crossing the lines'.

Tzvi Lev,

Knesset vote (illustration)
Knesset vote (illustration)
Hadas Parush/Flash90

A new law would prevent sitting lawmakers from defecting to other political parties amid an effort by rebel Zionist Union MK Robert Tivaev to jump to the coalition to expand its narrow Knesset majority.

According to the law being promoted by Zionist Union MK Leah Fadida, lawmakers that have already announed their decision to split from the party before joining the Knesset will not be allowed to serve as members of parliament for their faction. The rebel MK would be forced to wait after the next elections were held to represent their faction in the Knesset.

"The amendment is intended to solve an absurd situation in which a Knesset faction is forced to accept a member who no longer belongs to it in any substantive way, whereas the only glue that binds the two sides to each other is the dry wording of the law," said Fadida.

The legislation comes as Zionist Union MK Robert Tivaev is attempting to join the ruling coalition in exchange for being appoointed minister of absobrtion. Tivaev, who had replaced former MK Zuheir Bahloul, had already quit the party before Bahloul's resignation yet replaced him in the Knesset due to the current standing laws.

With a narrow 61 majority, the coalition needs every possible vote to pass legislation and Taviev's lack of coalition disicpline has already ensured the passage of one bill.

The Zionist Union has already sanctioned Tiviaev from his parliamentary activity after he was not present in the Knesset during a vote on Wednesday.

Tiviaev stood outside the plenum when Zionist Union MK Itzik Shmuli's bill to equalize old-age pensions to the minimum wage came up for a vote. In his defense Tiviaev claimed on his Twitter account that he was at an important meeting during the vote.

If during the next month MK Tiviaev will behave as a team player and in accordance with the positions of the faction, the sanctions will be removed. If he acts against the faction, the sanctions will be stepped up," the party said.




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