The Supreme Court and the Prime Minister are Fighting Againadmin / 0 Comments /
The Supreme Court and the Prime Minister are Fighting Again
The Prime Minister Office of Steven Harper and the spat between the Supreme Court of Canada is continuing. In many ways the events that occur seem to resemble tow kids fighting on the playground. The latest event happened last Thursday.
Chief Justice of the Court, Beverly McLachin, attempted to call the Prime Minister Office to discuss the Quebec vacancy of the court. This was considered to be inappropriate by Harper’s office and the call was not taken. Prime Minister Harper ignored the effort on the advice of his justice minister according to several reports.
The latest episode is just another example of the court and the Prime Minister trying to be in charge. Much of this stems back to the appointment of Marc Nadon to the court by Harper that was voided in October by the Court.
Mclachin attempted to make the phone call to help ease the tensions between the two sides. She wanted to discuss a report in the National Post in which McLachin was critical of the appointment of Nadon. The report was supposed to reveal that Mclachin had lobbied against the appointment that she thought was not a good choice. She reportedly blamed the current government of Harper on the seriously damaged relationship between the government and the court.
McLachin wanted Harper to know that the only thing that she had said was of the dangers associated with the Federal Court Appointment to the seat in Quebec. McLachin said that she was not expressing her views of the appointment or the decisions that were being made, but instead was just talking about the impact that this appointment would have on the court.
The selection process for the seat had started back in July. At that time, McLachin had sought to hold a meeting with the Prime Minister to talk about the selection process. According to Adam Dodek, the vice dean of Law at the University of Ottawa, this is not an unusual occurrences. It is common for the government and the chief justice to have discussions about the selections to fill seats. This is something that has occurred in the past and as long as it is all done in full view of others, there is nothing wrong with it.
What has made this situation worse is the name calling and the criticism of the Chief Justice and the Prime Minister. IT seems to be turning into a case of he said, she said that is not appropriate for people in these positions in government.
This type of arguing that is occurring before the public eye is not going to help with a selection system that is often shrouded in mystery and is not always clear for everyone to see. All that will occur is to further damage the opinion of the public about this process and to make them wonder if it is truly a fair process that is beneficial to the people of Canada. If these two cannot learn to act in a more adult manner, it will only cause more problems for both of them