Hon. Ray Hnatyshyn (Saskatoon West):
Madam Speaker, today is an historic day in the judicial history of Canada marked by the swearing in of Madam Justice Bertha Wilson as a judge of the Supreme Court of Canada. The appointment of this respected and accomplished jurist has been applauded by Canadians from coast to coast.
The appointment of the first woman to the Supreme Court of Canada was a result, in part, of strong representations by the official opposition and by widespread public input. In view of the imminent patriation of the Canadian Constitution, including the Charter of Rights and Freedoms, which will substantially increase the role and power of the Supreme Court of Canada in the determination of the rights and liberties of Canadian citizens, it is incumbent upon legislators to reassess the process of appointment to the Supreme Court of Canada, now the sole prerogative of the Prime Minister. I therefore move, seconded by the hon. member for Cambridge (Mr. Speyer):
That this House direct an immediate reference to the Standing Committee on Justice and Legal Affairs on the process of judicial appointments to the Supreme Court of Canada, including the involvement of the House of Commons in the review and confirmation of nominees to the Supreme Court of Canada.
Subtopic: THE JUDICIARY
Sub-subtopic: SUPREME COURT APPOINTMENT PROCESS-MOTION UNDER S O. 43