Yariv Levin
Yariv LevinYonatan Sindel/Flash 90

Justice Minister Yariv Levin gave an interview to CBS’ “60 Minutes”, which aired on Sunday night, as part of a feature which dealt with the protest movement against the government’s proposed judicial reforms.

Levin told interviewer Lesley Stahl that he respects the demonstrator’s right to protest, but they should also remember that the present government won the election.

“No democracy can accept a situation where the government, the elected government that has a majority in the parliament, will be unable to pass any bill and to do anything because there are protests, because there are some people that are against it,” he said.

Asked about the government being “the most right-wing government that Israel has ever had”, Levin replied, “And I'm proud to be part of that government, and I think that's what Israelis wanted to see.”

He also stated that “that the vast majority of the members of parliament that support this government stand firmly behind democratic and liberal principles” when asked by Stahl about ministers “who have made openly racist and homophobic statements.”

Levin disputed Stahl’s assertion that the judicial reform would allow the government to overrule the court.

“This is not my-- what I'm offering. The situation in Israel is that the Supreme court is above the government, is above the parliament, is even above the will of the people. What I want to do is to balance it,” said the Justice Minister, who explained the court is an elite bastion that too often overrules lawmakers chosen by the people.

Asked whether he would withdraw the proposals if he were to find out that Israel is at risk because of so many reservists leaving, Levin replied, “What's the price of democracy? What are you suggesting we do? Are we to tell the Israel citizens, ‘Okay, don't go to vote. There's no need to hold elections.’ We'll come to those ex-military figures and ask them what we are allowed to do or not.”