Justice Minister Ayelet Shaked (Jewish Home) on Monday slammed the Yesh Atid party and its chairman Yair Lapid for claiming their previously-submitted version of the Draft Law was similar to the current one.
Earlier on Monday, Yesh Atid MK Elazar Stern claimed the current version of the Draft Law includes criminal sanctions just like the one his own party suggested during the previous Knesset. He also claimed that the current version is harsher on haredim than his party's bill.
The Knesset is expected to vote on the new bill on Monday.
"The public needs to know the truth," Shaked said. "I've been in politics for six years already. I've never seen such a false spin and campaign. An entire party is spouting untrue messages dictated by its chairman and peddling false goods to the public, undisturbed."
"At the beginning, [Yesh Atid] MKs Ofer Shelah and Yael German still had their honor and admitted that the law is different. But apparently they've received orders to toe the line. In Yair Lapid's dictatorship, there's no other option.
"This version, as it will pass today, is inherently different than Yesh Atid's bill. During the previous Knesset, I invested many hours in convincing Lapid and Shelah to support economic sanctions instead of criminal sanctions (deferring to the Israel Defense Service Law), but I was unsuccessful. They prefer populism over character, and they insisted that...the Defense Minister would not be able to defer drafting [the haredim] anymore. That was the core of the argument between myself and them for many months.
"MKs Ofer Shelah, Elazar Stern, Omer Barlev (Zionist Union), Robert Ilatov (Yisrael Beytenu), Tzachi Hanegbi (Likud), [Moshe] Gafni (UTJ), and former MKs [Meir] Porush, and [Ariel] Atias were there and they also know the truth. And there are several honest reporters. The current law includes economic sanctions if the requirements are not met, and if that also doesn't help, then the law will expire and we will have one year to make a new law.
"So why not just tell the truth? 'Ayelet, you're right. I made a mistake and changed my mind.' That's okay, it's allowed. But to blatantly lie - that's not allowed."