Israel Limits Supreme Court
Israel's legislature voted to proceed yesterday with a highly contested law that will limit the Supreme Court's power to overrule government actions it deems "unreasonable." Backed by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, the measure was passed with a 64-0 vote after the 56-member opposition walked out of the chamber in a boycott. The bill is part of a series of reforms aimed at reducing the court's influence—including giving the government control over the appointment of judges—and has triggered 29 consecutive weeks of protests across the country (see our previous write-up). Supporters argue the changes are necessary to balance the court, while critics claim the reforms give Netanyahu nearly unchecked power and weaken the court. The Movement for Quality Government, an Israeli nongovernmental organization, filed a petition to block the law with the Supreme Court immediately after the vote took place, citing its unconstitutionality and potential to disrupt the system of checks and balances. See an explanation of the reforms here.