Gavison?s Nomination for Supreme Court All But Doomed

The chances for Ruth Gavison to be selected as a Supreme Court justice dwindled dramatically on Tuesday, when a lawyer opposing her nomination was elected to sit on the selections committee.

Scott Shiloh, | updated: 16:37

Professor Gavison’s nomination is favored heavily by those who advocate a more restrained legal approach to court intervention on issues of security and the legislative process.

Israel’s Supreme Court justices are selected by a committee of judges, lawyers and politicians. The lawyers on the committee are selected by the Israel Bar Association. On Tuesday, the National Council of the Bar Association chose two lawyers, one of whom, Yuri Guy-Ron, opposes Gavison’s nomination. The other is reportedly undecided.

One member of the selections committee vehemently opposed to Gavison’s nomination is Supreme Court Justice Aharon Barak. Barak claims that Gavison’s legal approach constitutes an “agenda” that he has vowed to keep off the court.

With all the other judges on the committee following Barak’s opposition to Gavison, her nomination appears to be all but doomed.

As of Tuesday, the line-up on the selections committee is as follows:

Opposed to Gavison -

Judges: Aharon Barak, Dorit Beinish, and Eliezer Rivlin
Attorneys: Yuri Guy-Ron
Politicians: MK Avraham Shochat (Labor)

In favor

Judges: None
Attorneys: None
Politicians: Justice Minister Tzippy Livny (Kadima), Health Minister Danny Naveh (Likud), MK Sha'ul Yahalom (National Religious Party)


Attorney Pinhas Marinsky

As that line-up indicates, Gavison’s opponents have a majority on the committee, even if Marinsky votes in favor. Most of Gavison’s opponents are on the left of Israel’s political spectrum. MK Shochat of Labor delayed his planned resignation from the Knesset simply in order to vote against Gavison and ensure her defeat.

If Gavison loses, the leading nominee for a seat on the High Court is Mordechai Kremnitzer, who, like Gavison, is a Hebrew University professor of law.

Kremnitzer’s legal approach, while more amenable to Barak, places him at the far left of the country’s political spectrum. Kremnitzer has been an outspoken legal critic of Israel’s presence in Judea, Samaria, and Gaza, and generally views Israeli communities in those regions as illegal.