Eitan Ginzburg to become Israel’s third gay cabinet minister on Monday

Written by on May 3, 2021

The appointments, which will fill vacant cabinet slots, come just ahead of the court-imposed deadline.

Eitan Ginzburg: Former Mayor of Raanana & Israel’s first openly gay mayor. (photo credit: YANIR COZIN / MAARIV)

Eitan Ginzburg: Former Mayor of Raanana & Israel’s first openly gay mayor.

(photo credit: YANIR COZIN / MAARIV)

Israel will have a record three cabinet ministers from the LGBT community late Monday, when Monday morning’s cabinet decision to approve the appointment of Blue and White faction chairman Eitan Ginzburg as communications minister is announced in the Knesset plenum.

Ginzburg, who became Israel’s first openly gay mayor when he was mayor of Ra’anana, will join gay ministers Itzik Shmuli, who left Labor, and Amir Ohana (Likud).

According to the cabinet’s decision on Monday morning, the Science and Technology portfolio will go to Chili Tropper (Blue and White), the Higher Education Ministry to Yoav Galant (Likud), the Water Ministry to Yuval Steinitz (Likud) and the Social Equality portfolio to Michael Biton (Blue and White).

The Communications portfolio was held by Blue and White leader Benny Gantz after he fired Yoaz Hendel on December 16 when Hendel left Blue and White for New Hope. But Gantz’s temporary appointment expired.   

Attorney-General Avichai Mandelblit warned Gantz that he is holding too many portfolios. Besides being alternate prime minister and defense minister, he is minister of justice, and was acting science and technology, social equality and communications minister. The Supreme Court set a deadline of 4 p.m. Monday to fill vacancies in the cabinet.   

The Movement for Quality Government, which petitioned the High Court, said the appointments should have been made much earlier and not just ahead of a court imposed deadline. The movement said other key appointments were necessary, including that of a state prosecutor.

“In this government of national paralysis, only the intervention of the court enables the country to be run,” the movement said.

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