MK Ohana to A7:
'Picking Prime Minister can't be left to the president'

Likud MK supports law obligating president of Israel to tap head of largest party to form government.

Hezki Baruch ,

Ohana and Netanyahu
Ohana and Netanyahu
Hillel Meir/TPS

Knesset Member Amir Ohana (Likud) said Wednesday he understands the fear in the Prime Minister's coterie that President Reuven Rivlin will refuse to tap Netanyahu to form the next government with the possibility of an indictment hanging over the premier.

"I don't know if there's truth in reports that the Prime Minister wants to postpone elections out of fear the President will place the task of forming the government on someone else; that sounds unreal and absurd," says Ohana, but stresses "the procedure by which the President imposes formation of the government on those who, in his opinion, have the best chance, leaves too much room for discretion and may lead to absurd situations."

Ohana supports the proposal of coalition chairman Dudi Amsalem (Likud) to change the law so the task of forming the government will be assigned to the head of the largest party. "We mustn't leave room for ambiguity and uncertainty and to foist the State's fate on the President. The President performs an emblematic and not an executive role; it's not his job to decide fate."

Is it because of the murky relations between Netanyahu and Rivlin that the law should be changed?

"This week we interviewed the President and the Prime Minister together and I won't say there's any great love there, but I think relations between them are normal. If the President imposes someone other than the one heading the largest party, it's absurd and the public won't accept it."

How do you respond to the Supreme Court Chief Justice who said there are Knesset Members who incite against judges?

"It's a well-known tactic of the legal system and the legal advisors to preserve the unlimited, vast, and concentrated power that they've accumulated and paint those who try to balance and bring more democracy and the voice of the people and mark them as an enemy of the rule of law. We'll restore democracy and the balance between the authorities that don't exist today."