Israel’s Supreme Court sets June date for elections

Israel’s top court has set a June date to choose the next president of the country, paving the way for a major reshuffle that will give the ruling coalition control of the government and the economy.

The court on Tuesday approved the appointment of the next cabinet, which will be led by former prime minister Tzipi Livni, who won a landslide victory in the April 24 general election.

Livni, a leftist, won the election with an approval rating of 56.4 percent, beating Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, the hardline nationalist party that won the previous elections in May.

Lovni was not the first choice of the ruling bloc, which has already appointed a minister of defense, the interior minister, the justice minister, and other key posts in the cabinet.

The next government will have to balance the need for economic growth with the need to avoid a repeat of the crisis in 2008-2009, when the government was forced to shut down.

Netanyahu is seeking to win back control of Israel from Livni and keep his party in power.

The Israeli economy is projected to contract by 1.2 percent in 2017, according to the Israeli Statistical Institute, with a sharp slowdown expected in 2018.

Netah Vardi, a prominent commentator on Israeli politics, said the court was setting the date “because Livni is likely to have to change the direction of the economy,” and that she will have a lot of work ahead to get there.

Vardi said the current coalition of Netanyahu and Livni was “in danger of being dissolved by an angry electorate, and the new coalition will have no chance of forming a government.

The coalition’s leadership, however, is unlikely to be shaken,” Vardi said.