Impeachment by Judicial Review: Israel's Odd System of Checks and Balances

This paper focuses on a doctrine that the Israeli Supreme Court has
developed since the early 1990s under which the Court removes
officeholders from their position by ordinary judicial review
proceedings. Although this doctrine is not founded on any formal
constitutional settings, nonetheless it has had a significant influence
on the relationships between the judiciary and the political branches,
as it was the basis for the removal of several major political figures
— including ministers and top bureaucrats — from office.
This practice of ‘impeachment’ by judicial review is unique
to Israel, and has hardly been studied in the comparative
literature. It is, however, extremely common and influential in Israeli
constitutional and political life. In this Article, I describe
the development of this practice by the Israeli Supreme Court and
its influence on the relationships between the courts and politics in
Israel. I also provide a critical evaluation of the doctrine.