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Notice of Inquiry in Senate Chamber: Supreme Court of Canada

Supreme Court of Canada

Notice of Inquiry

Hon. Anne C. Cools: Honourable senators, I give notice, pursuant to rules 5-1 and 5-6(2), that:

I will call the attention of the Senate to:

(a) the constitutional code and practices called judicial independence, the legal and political concepts, enshrined in our constitution, most particularly in the British North America Act 1867 sections 96-101, which prescribe the constitutional position of the superior court judges of Canada, and the duty of our houses of parliament to protect them, and to superintend judicial independence, and, justice itself, and;

(b) to the unsettling public circumstances in which the vice regal of Her Majesty, who is also the distinguished Supreme Court of Canada's Chief Justice, the Right Honourable Beverley McLachlin, P.C., was placed, consequent to unfair and unjustified insinuations by some in the Prime Minister's Office, which insinuations distorted the Chief Judge's proper actions in a telephone communication with the well-respected Attorney General Peter MacKay, which communication was about her proper and dutiful purpose of compliance with the law on the selection and eligibility of the three judges from Quebec, pursuant to the Supreme Court of Canada Act section 6, and;

(c) to the clearly drafted section 6 of the Supreme Court Act which dictates that,

At least three of the judges shall be appointed from among the judges of the Court of Appeal or of the Superior Court of the Province of Quebec or from among the applicants of that Province,


(d) to the undesirable insinuations and distortions, which had the consequence of exposing Madame Chief Justice to potentially ugly controversy and turmoil, which potential compelled the Court, in the person of its Executive Legal Officer, Mr. Owen Rees, to issue a statement to clarify the facts and the propriety of the Chief Justice's most dutiful actions, which statement was well-received by the public, and;

(e) Madame Justice McLachlin's diligence in her dutiful endeavours as Chief Justice, and the well-established principle that all judicial officers and lawyers have a duty, if having the knowledge, to take action to prevent breaches of the law and legal wrongs and sins.

The remainder of this day's Senate Debates are available here.