The Knesset’s Judicial Selection Committee approved Justice Asher Grunis as the new Supreme Court President on Friday, after the veteran judge stood at heart of a months-long political storm.
Seven of the committee’s nine members supported the nomination, with MK David Rotem abstaining. The panel’s ninth member is Grunis himself, who did not vote.
Grunis’ path to the Supreme Court presidency was assured last month after the Knesset plenum passed in second and third reading the so-called “Grunis bill.”
The Grunis bill, sponsored by MK Yaakov Katz (National Union), removed the restriction preventing Supreme Court justices who have less than three years on the bench before retirement from being appointed court president.
The restriction was written into a law promoted by the previous justice minister, Daniel Friedmann. Grunis will have less than three years left to serve on the bench when Supreme Court President Dorit Beinisch retires.
Opposition MKs slammed the bill and opposition, with Kadima chairperson MK Tzipi Livni saying it was part of the coalition’s conspiracy to undermine Israel’s democracy and belittle the Supreme Court.
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