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View Rhéal Fortin Profile
BQ (QC)
Thank you, Madam Chair.
Thank you, Madam Justice Kent and Mr. Justice MacDonald. I'm pleased to hear from you this morning.
I understand from your testimony that you have two main concerns: on the one hand, the training of provincially appointed judges who are appointed by the provinces, and on the other hand, what we just talked about, judicial independence.
These are points I'm also very sensitive to, but I think there's a small distinction to be made. As far as I'm concerned, judges who are appointed by the provinces should not be subject to interference by the federal government. In my view, it's up to the provinces to deal with these issues.
That said, judicial independence is an issue of great interest to me. I would have asked you for clarification, but the document you just sent us clarifies it.
I'd like you to confirm something for me. As I understand it, you're asking us to trust all of our judges and our courts. As a lawyer myself, I also trust our judicial system, and I share the opinion of my colleague Mr. Maloney that we may have the best judicial system in the world today.
In the distinction you make, you invite us to place this trust in the judiciary rather than in the legislature. Is that correct? If so, what about democracy, the right of citizens to elect the legislator, to elect their representatives to Parliament, so that the public can influence the issues that concern our society? Is there not a democratic problem with the choice you are asking us to make?
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