Merav Michaeli

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Merav Michaeli
Merav Michaeli by Ron Kedmi.jpg
Leader of the Labor Party
Assumed office
24 January 2021
Ministerial roles
2021–Minister of Transport
Faction represented in the Knesset
2013–2015Labor Party
2015–2019Zionist Union
2019–Labor Party
Personal details
Born (1966-11-24) 24 November 1966 (age 55)
Petah Tikva, Israel
Domestic partnerLior Schleien

Merav Michaeli (Hebrew: מֵרַב מִיכָאֵלִי, romanizedMērav Mīxāʾēlī; born 24 November 1966) is an Israeli politician, journalist, TV anchor, radio broadcaster, feminist, and activist. She is currently the leader of the Israeli Labor Party and the Minister of Transport and Road Safety in the thirty-sixth government of Israel.


Michaeli was born in Petah Tikva[1] to Ami Michaeli and Suzan Kastner, of Hungarian Jewish background. She is the granddaughter of Rudolf Kastner[2] and also of Nehemia Michaeli who was the last secretary of the Mapam party.[3]

During her youth, Michaeli served as leader in the Israeli Scouts.[4] In the IDF, Michaeli was a newscaster on the Army Radio. She helped establish Galgalatz and Radio Tel Aviv radio stations and would also lead Hebrew television programs focused on politics.[5] She was a journalist and opinion columnist for the Haaretz newspaper. She also taught university classes and lectured extensively on the topics of feminism, media, and communications. In September 2012, she spoke at TEDxJaffa on the theme of "paradigm shift", in which she argued that society should "cancel marriage".[6]

Political career[edit]

In October 2012 Michaeli announced that she was joining the Labor Party, and intended to run for inclusion on Labor's list for the 2013 Knesset elections.[7] On 29 November 2012 she won fifth place on the Labor Party's list,[8] and was elected to the Knesset when Labor won 15 seats.[9]

In preparation for the 2015 general election the Labor and Hatnuah parties formed the Zionist Union alliance. Michaeli won the ninth slot on the Zionist Union list, and was elected to the Knesset as it won 24 seats.[10][11] Shortly before the end of the Knesset term, the Zionist Union was dissolved, with Labor and Hatnuah sitting in the Knesset as separate parties. Michaeli was placed seventh on the Labor list for the April 2019 elections, but lost her seat as Labor was reduced to six seats. However, she returned to the Knesset in August 2019 after Stav Shaffir resigned from the legislature.[12] On 22 April 2020 after the 2020 Israeli legislative election the then Labor party leader Amir Peretz announced that the Labor Party would join the unity government in the Netanyahu-Gantz coalition, but Michaeli rejected sitting in the coalition under Netanyahu.[13]

She was elected to lead the Israeli Labor Party on 24 January 2021 after her predecessor, Amir Peretz, announced he would not stand for re-election.[14] In the election on 23 March 2021, the Israeli Labor Party was granted seven seats, and, during the parliamentary negotiation phase, put their trust in Yair Lapid to form the government. On 13 June 2021, the 36th Israeli government was sworn in, and with it Michaeli as Minister of Transport and Road safety. On 31 December 2021, she announced that the Central Bus Station in Tel Aviv would be closed within four years, breaking her promise to close it immediately. She gave in to the mayor of Tel Aviv, Ron Huldai, who has no intention of closing the Central Bus Station.[citation needed] Michaeli was re-elected to lead the Israeli Labor Party in July 2022.[15]

Personal life[edit]

Her partner is the television producer, host and comedian Lior Schleien.[16] In August 2021, Merav and Schleien's son was born in the United States by surrogate pregnancy.[17]

President Rivlin meets with Merav Michaeli of the Labor Party, May 2021 (GPOZAC 7802)


  1. ^ "MK Michaeli in Israeli Parliament website". Knesset. Knesset.
  2. ^ Harkov, Lahav (3 May 2016). "My grandfather did the inconceivable – negotiated with Nazis – to save Jews". The Jerusalem Post. Retrieved 10 May 2022.
  3. ^ "Gafni to Merav Michaeli". Arutz 7. Retrieved 16 June 2021.
  4. ^ "Merav Michaeli". Jewish Virtual Library. Retrieved 18 June 2021.
  5. ^ "Knesset Member, Merav Michaeli". Retrieved 16 June 2021.
  6. ^ "Cancel Marriage: Merav Michaeli at TEDxJaffa". YouTube. TEDx Talks. Retrieved 10 November 2012.
  7. ^ Lis, Jonathan. "Merav Michaeli to Vie for Spot on Labor's Election List". Haaretz. Retrieved 31 October 2012.
  8. ^ Azulay, Moran. "Herzog wins Labor primaries; Merav Michaeli 5th on party list". Ynetnews. Retrieved 30 November 2012.
  9. ^ "Final Israel Election Results: Kadima's in Knesset, Habayit Hayehudi Gets 12 Seats". Haaretz. 2013. Retrieved 23 October 2018.
  10. ^ "Women win big as Yachimovich, Shaffir top Labor primary vote". The Times of Israel. Retrieved 30 October 2018.
  11. ^ "All 120 incoming Knesset members". The Times of Israel. Retrieved 30 October 2018.
  12. ^ "Merav Michaeli returns to Knesset". Arutz Sheva. 13 August 2019. Retrieved 13 August 2019.
  13. ^ Wootliff, Raoul (22 April 2020). "After staking mustache on not joining Netanyahu, Peretz defends doing so anyway". Times of Israel. Retrieved 22 April 2020.
  14. ^ Hoffman, Gil (24 January 2021). "Victorious Michaeli to begin merger talks with Huldai". The Jerusalem Post. Retrieved 10 February 2021.
  15. ^ "מרב מיכאלי נבחרה לראשות מפלגת העבודה בפעם השנייה ברציפות" [Merav Michaeli was elected to a second term as leader of the Labor Party]. Davar (in Hebrew). 18 July 2022. Archived from the original on 19 July 2022. Retrieved 18 July 2022.
  16. ^ Meet Merav Michaeli, the fiery feminist of Israel’s government, New York Times, 23 December 2015
  17. ^ "Israeli minister criticised for breaching Covid rules – then introduces new baby". 23 August 2021. Retrieved 23 August 2021.

External links[edit]

Political offices
Preceded by Leader of the Israeli Labor Party