Several opposition parties plan to present proposals for a Knesset vote on Wednesday, demanding the establishment of a parliamentary commission of inquiry into matters they wish to see investigated.
MK Betzalel Smotrich of the Yamina party is demanding that a commission of inquiry be set up to investigate the judicial system; the Meretz and Yesh Atid parties are demanding a commission of inquiry into the Submarine Affair.
Meanwhile, as reported by Kan Reshet Bet, the two main factions comprising the unity government – Likud and Blue & White – have come to a reciprocal agreement to scupper both proposals. Blue & White objects to the inquiry into the judiciary; Likud objects to the Submarine Affair being investigated – and so the two have arranged to jointly oppose both proposals, virtually ensuring that they will be defeated.
Previously, statements made by Foreign Minister Gabi Ashkenazi of Blue & White had suggested that he and party leader Benny Gantz would support an inquiry into the Submarine Affair, in which PM Netanyahu is personally implicated, according to some accounts – now, it appears, Blue & White have decided that preserving the integrity of the government is more important, as has the Likud.
Responding to the news, MK Smotrich said: “Just as he has been doing over the last ten years, Bibi [PM Netanyahu] is selling out the right wing and its values for his personal interests. To all those who see the battle to reform the judiciary as critical, the time has come for you realize that Netanyahu is the problem and not the solution. We will replace him, with G-d’s help, with a right-wing government that knows how to govern.”
Last month, the Knesset rejected a similar proposal submitted by Smotrich, demanding the establishment of a parliamentary commission of inquiry into conflicts of interest among judges and the prosecution. 47 MKs voted against the proposal and just 6 voted in favor. MKs from the Shas party voted against, while UTJ MKs absented themselves for the vote. Other than Likud MKs Shlomo Karhi and Ariel Kallner, Likud party members left the plenum before the vote took place.