Should an Incumbent Prime Minister be Immune from Prosecution?

By Moshe Feiglin

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After former Israeli Prime Minister Olmert was sentenced to a 6 year jail term for accepting bribes, Moshe Feiglin wrote the following:

I have mixed feelings about former PM Olmert’s jail sentence. On one hand, there is no sentence too harsh for this evil person. But when I detach myself from my feelings toward him, I find myself facing a conundrum on a national level, for two reasons:

One is the desecration of G-d’s Name that his trial and sentence evoke. It doesn’t look very good when Israel’s former PM goes to jail. There is not much, however, that can be done about that. Even a prime minister cannot be above the law.

The second issue that bothers me is the ability of bureaucrats to initiate an investigation against an incumbent prime minister and his ministers by employing their technical power against the electoral decision of the nation.

It is specifically today, when the prime minister who was, in my opinion, the most despicable that Israel has known, is sentenced to a punishment that he certainly deserves – I repeat my opinion that an incumbent prime minister and his ministers should have immunity from prosecution as long as they are in office.

The media may do its job and reveal the suspected misdeeds. If the public, despite the suspicions, decides to elect the criminal, then the public is sovereign and the official will have immunity from prosecution. The opposite option – when the rule of the people becomes the rule of the bureaucrats – worries me much more than the possibility that one politician or another may not receive the punishment he deserves.

Source: The Jewish Leadership Blog

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