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Aug 24, 2022

Personal Electoral Reform only makes things worse

According to Kol Hai News, Minister Benny Gantz is planning to present some electoral reform laws after discussing the issues with experts from the Israeli Democracy Institute.

Gantz's plan for passing laws to reform the system includes items like:
  • requiring a minimum of 70 MKs to bring down a government and disperse the Knesset (this is less than the 90 MKs Avigdor Liberman recently spoke about)
  • an as of yet undetermined amount of time between elections
  • term limits for Prime Minister, set at a maximum of 8 years
  • failing to pass a budget would not automatically cause the collapse of the government
Some of this is clearly influenced by his own experience with Netanyahu breaking their rotation deal and letting the government fall instead of passing a budget so Gantz would not take office, and the most recent government collapsing, with the repeated elections of the past 3 years.

Personal experience can ring a bell on what needs to be done, but if he just fixes what he was hurt by, without fully reforming the system, next time it will be something else, or next time his own minor reforms will come back to hurt him.

The Knesset has no long term planning. Maybe that is understandable considering Israel being a young country and one surrounded by enemies looking to destroy it. No long term planning also means each person tries to adjust the laws to whatever he thinks will help him in the short term. Netanyahu changed the law a while back to hold direct elections for PM with a separate ballot for Knesset because he thought it would help him. it did, but the unintended consequences included hurting the Likud because people could vote for him and other parties. So he changed it back. Gantz is doing the same thing. Gantz suffered from a government collapsing due to no budget, so he wants to change that, thinking it will help him, and thinking requiring 70 MKs will prevent his future government form collapsing so easily. When he passes this and then cant take down Netanyahu's government it will be his own fault. These guys all think reforming the system means making changes that will help a specific individual.

We need electoral reform, but it needs to be in the hands of professionals who can figure out exactly what our electoral system should look like without personal bias.

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  1. Independent professionals though in recent years have shown Us ruefully in various countries they can be even more biased than political committees

  2. Whether or not they're meant to help Gantz, they all seem pretty sensible.

  3. While Bibi supported strongly direct election for p.m. ridiculous to say it originated with him. He was neophyte leader of opposition
    Peres Barak etc all supported it


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