Feb 14, 2011, 2:47 PM EST
Right now, an Israeli citizen living abroad cannot vote in Israel’s election. You want to vote, you have to be in the country. (For comparison, any United States citizen living abroad, no matter how long, can vote by absentee ballot.)
That impacts Omri Casspi, the Sacramento Kings forward who is the first Israeli in the NBA.
Senior Likud officials said that out of the three issues set to be raised, the most likely change was the so-called Omri Casspi bill, which would allow some Israelis abroad to vote and which is named after the Sacramento Kings player who is the first Israeli to play in the NBA….
The coalition agreement requires that there be a vote on enabling Israelis abroad to vote, but the same agreement gives every faction veto power over changes in the electoral system. Shas has threatened to use its veto to oppose a bill allowing Israelis living abroad for more than two months to vote.
Few things make the American government look sane like government by coalition.
Anyway, it looks like this may pass but with a limit of only Israelis who have been away for a year or two… which soon will leave Casspi on the outside looking in. He may return for part of the year during the summer, but he will be in the United States more.
Of course, when it comes time to field Israel’s national basketball team, he will be welcomed back with open arms as a national sports hero. He just can’t vote. Nice.
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