Ayelet Shaked
Ayelet Shaked Photo by Tomer Neuberg/Flash90

Justice Minister and New Right leader Ayelet Shaked confronted Meretz chairwoman Tamar Zandberg on the Ofira and Berkovich program on Channel 12. "Why is the head of your camp, Gantz, ashamed to say that he is a leftist?" Shaked asked Zandberg.

Shaked claimed that Gantz "calls himself a centrist because he knows that if he says he's a leftist, he won't be able to earn votes because there are no takers. That's it, the leftists disappeared, they faded away."

The Justice Minister also said she has a deep ideological disagreement with the Supreme Court as it is today. "I don't think the court should handle the state's affairs," Shaked said. "In the past 30 years, the court has taken a great deal of authority for itself that it didn't have in the past. Every person can stop every matter, so the court deals with every issue and intervenes in matters of security and economics that it has no responsibility for. The court should settle disputes, not run the state."

"I am the representative of all the citizens of Israel and therefore I want to change the system and move it toward a much more conservative position," Shaked added. "Incidentally, during the days of the great presidents [of the Supreme Court] Agranat and Landau, we were also a wonderful democracy."

"The soul of every democracy is an independent legal system that is not political," Zandberg said. "It's neither left nor right. The left is very dissatisfied with the Supreme Court that approved the settlements and didn't stand by our values. But an independent court is the quintessence of any democracy. "

Zandberg attacked Shaked's legal revolution. "She leads it with all her power and risks subordinating the legal system to politics. She's a dangerous Justice Minister because she has a very clear agenda to distort the independence of the court, to subordinate it to the political system. The courts cannot be subject to the political system, they must be independent."

"I'm a politician who gets things done, I'm not at all dangerous," Shaked responded. "I totally believe in the independence of the court. The moment a judge is chosen, he has no authority other than the authority of the law. But since the judge intervenes in ideological and political issues, there must be political involvement in the appointment of judges. And if I want conservative judges, I have to push for the appointment of conservative judges."

"In the last term we saw that every time the court stood by the rule of law," Zandberg continued, "there were many attempts by the right-wing government to distort the rule of law, for example, the Regulation Law, the law of conscientious objectors, the Nationality Law. It cries out to the heavens - a Basic Law that seeks to establish a hierarchy among the citizens of the state. Jews are more equal than Arabs. It's shocking. "

"The court has no authority to intervene in Basic Laws," Shaked replied. "Tamar, do you believe that the State of Israel is the nation-state of the Jewish people?"

"The nation-state of the Jewish people does not contradict the equality of full rights of all its citizens," Zandberg replied. "You have violated equality."

Israel's Nationality Law states that Israel is the Jewish people's nation state and establishes as law Israel's flag, symbols, the Hebrew language, and various other items mentioned in the Declaration of Independence. It does not, however, affect private individuals' personal rights.

Twenty years ago, 40% of the public defined themselves as leftists," Shaked said. "Today, only 8% define themselves as ardent leftists. What did you do wrong?"

Zandberg answered, "Actually it's not us, it's you. Because in those years you used harsh, destructive and deliberate propaganda against the left."

"It wasn't the intifada with 1,200 people killed?" Shaked replied. "It wasn't the Disengagement and terror from Gaza? The leftists were destroyed following the Disengagement and the Second Intifada."

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