Israel is a democratic and Jewish State, and responsible public servants need to nurture both of these national goods. But for the last several decades, Israel’s democratic character has been challenged by its Supreme Court, whose unelected judges have arrogated to themselves legislative functions that do not belong to them, effectively supplanting the democratically elected lawmakers of the Knesset. Israel’s activist judiciary threatens the freedoms of Israeli citizens. Since 2015, Ayelet Shaked has served as Israel’s Minister of Justice, and she joins us in New York to lay out her vision for reestablishing the Knesset as Israel’s democratically elected legislative branch, for restoring the Israeli balance between Jewish and democratic principles, and for instituting the conservative reforms that Israel needs for effective governance.

Ayelet Shaked

Ayelet Shaked has served as Israel’s Minister of Justice since May 2015. Minister Shaked is a member of the Bayit Yehudi (Jewish Home) party in the Israeli Knesset. She was elected 2nd on the party’s list in the 2015 primaries. From 2006 to 2008, Minister Shaked worked as a personal assistant to then-opposition leader Benjamin Netanyahu. In 2010, Shaked founded the “My Israel” movement together with Bayit Yehudi founder Naftali Bennett. The movement is a Zionist Hasbara organization that combats demonization and dis-information about Israel via the internet. As a result of her successful Hasbara efforts at “My Israel”, Shaked won the 2012 Abramowitz Israeli Prize for Media Criticism. In November 2012 she was elected 2nd in the Bayit Yehudi’s primaries, making her both the first woman and secular person elected to the party’s list. As an MK in the 19th Knesset, Minister Shaked served as the Chair of the Knesset Lobby which focused on returning illegal migrants to their countries of origin, Chair of the Special Knesset Committee that drafted legislation aimed at integrating the Ultra-Orthodox into the Army and Israeli Society and Chair of the Knesset Lobby for the release of Jonathan Pollard. Additionally, she served as a member of the Committee on Foreign Workers and the Finance Committee. During her army service, Minister Shaked served as an officer in the elite “Golani” Brigade. MK Shaked holds a BSc in electrical engineering and computer science from Tel Aviv University. She is the mother of two children and lives with her husband in Tel Aviv, where she was born and raised.