MK Rivlin: This Knesset is most vilified in the history of the state

Knesset Speaker Reuven Rivlin on Wednesday lambasted the behavior of a number of lawmakers who he said had failed to bring glory on the current parliament. Speaking to parliamentary reporters to mark the end of the current Knesset after three years, Rivlin said that, „the 16th Knesset was undoubtedly the most vilified Knesset in the history of the state.” He said that the most abasing moment had been when the decision was made to allow police officers inside the Knesset to investigate suspicions of „double voting” by a number of MKs in a plenum vote in 2003. Rivlin expressed sorrow that several unworthy MKs had been elected to the Knesset, but refused to identify them by name. He said that the most triumphant moment of the Knesset was the moment when the plenum approved the unilateral disengagement, one of the biggest decisions in the history of the state, and had prevented a civil war even though thousands of Israeli citizens were forced to leave their homes in Gaza and the northern West Bank. Rivlin also had praise for one lawmaker, saying that in his opinion, the coalition chairman and Likud whip, MK Gideon Sa’ar, who made his mark and was more influential than any other MK in the workings of the Knesset. Legislative Champions: Yahalom and Finkelstein Meanwhile, a statistical report was released Wednesday summing up the activities of the members of the outgoing Knesset. The report named Shaul Yahalom and Gila Finkelstein (both of the National Religious Party) „Legislative Champions” for bringing about the approvals of 14 laws in second and third readings. Second place went to Ehud Rassabi (Shinui) for passing 11 new laws, and third place to MK Moshe Gafni (United Torah Judaism), who managed to seal the approval of ten laws in second and third readings. MK Abdulmalik Dehamshe (United Arab List) received the title of „Speech Champion,” honoring his delivery of 553 speeches. On the other hand, David Levy (Likud) delivered the smallest number of speeches of any MK (20). As for the MK with the most motions for the agenda, MK Mohammed Barakeh (Hadash-Ta’al) led the way with 77 and Arieh Eldad (National Union) followed with 72. „Champion of Parliamentary Questions” goes to MK Dehamshe who submitted 85, with Shlomo Benizri and Nissim Dahan (both from Shas) following behind him with 84 and 83, respectively. The 16th Knesset held a total of 302 meetings, in which 250 no confidence motions and 3459 parliamentary questions were submitted. 348 laws were approved, 176 of which were initiated by the government, 156 by private MKs and 16 by Knesset committees.