Pursuant to Standing Order 39(7), Mr. Braid (Parliamentary Secretary for Infrastructure and Communities) presented the returns to the following questions made into Orders for Return:
Q-437 — Mr. Cotler (Mount Royal) — With regard to the appointment of Justice Marc Nadon: (a) who did what and when prior to the Selection Panel being convened; (b) who determined the process to be followed with respect to the most recent appointment process to fill a vacancy on the Supreme Court of Canada (SCC); (c) was the process for Justice Wagner designed with the departure of Justice Fish a year later in mind; (d) was the process for Justice Nadon designed with the forthcoming departure of Justice LeBel in mind; (e) in the breakdown of appointment process costs provided in the answer to Q-239, what accounts for the "Acquisition of Machinery and Equipment" cost associated with the appointment of Justice Marc Nadon; (f) was there a competitive bidding process with respect to the goods and services in (a); (g) what accounts for the greater cost of "Legal Services" for the appointment of Justice Marc Nadon relative to the reported costs provided in the answer to Q-239 for other Justices; (h) are the costs for the legal opinions of Justices Binnie and Charron included in the "Legal Services" heading for the appointment process of Justice Marc Nadon reported in the answer to Q-239; (i) if the answer to (f) is no, under what heading are these opinion costs found and, if not reported in the answer to Q-239, where are they reported; (j) were the legal opinions of any Quebec jurists explicitly sought with respect to the eligibility of Justice Marc Nadon and, if so, (i) whose opinions were sought, (ii) on what date, (iii) at what cost; (k) were the legal opinions of any Quebec jurists explicitly sought with respect to the eligibility of a federal judge to assume a Quebec seat on the SCC and, if so, (i) whose opinions were sought, (ii) on what date, (iii) at what cost; (l) how long will the materials relative to Justice Nadon's appointment remain on the website for the Office of the Commissioner for Federal Judicial Affairs Canada; (m) when were these materials first posted;
(n) under what guidelines will they be removed; (o) how was the decision to seek outside legal advice relative to Justice Nadon's eligibility made, (i) by whom, (ii) on what dates, (iii) why; (p) did the Department of Justice render an internal opinion as to the eligibility of Justice Nadon to assume a Quebec seat on the SCC; (q) what assessment or evaluation of the Nadon nomination has the government undertaken to improve the process for the next appointment; (r) what assessment, evaluation, or review of the Nadon nomination will the government undertake so as to learn from it; (s) with respect to the statement of the Minister reported by CBC on March 24, 2014, that "we'll examine our options as we ensure that the Supreme Court has its full complement" what specific options were considered by the government; (t) did the government consider re-naming Justice Nadon after the decision in Reference re Supreme Court Act, ss. 5 and 6 and, if not, why did the Minister not rule this out when asked subsequent to the ruling's release; (u) on what specific dates did the Selection Panel engage in consultations relative to the process that resulted in the nomination of Justice Nadon; (v) did any consultations or meetings of the Selection Panel occur after July 15, 2013; (w) were any outside lawyers consulted on the amendments made to the Supreme Court Act during the nomination of Justice Marc Nadon; (x) was Quebec consulted on the amendments made to the Supreme Court Act during the nomination of Justice Marc Nadon; (y) was the Barreau du Quebec consulted on the amendments made to the Supreme Court Act during the nomination of Justice Marc Nadon; (z) were any documents, presentations, or memos prepared for ministers or their staff, from April 1, 2013 to present regarding Justice Marc Nadon and, if so, what are (i) the dates, (ii) the titles or subject-matters, (iii) the department, commission, or agency's internal tracking number;
(aa) with respect to the Minister's appearance before the Standing Committee on Justice and Human Rights on Thursday, November 21, 2013, wherein he deferred to Ms. Laurie Wright (Assistant Deputy Minister, Public Law Sector, Department of Justice) on a question regarding consultations in the matter of changes to the Supreme Court Act and wherein she said "In this particular case, I'm not aware that there were any consultations with the Barreau du Québec. It's not unusual for the government to consult in circumstances such as this, though", (i) were there any consultations with the Barreau du Quebec and, if so, on what dates, (ii) was the Minister aware personally of consultations, (iii) what role would the Minister personally play in such consultations in 'usual' circumstances, (iv) if there were no consultations, why were none held, (v) were any consultations requested by the government in this regard; (bb) with respect to the various costs reported in the response to Q-74 related to Ms. Louise Charron, Mr. Ian Binnie and Professor Peter Hogg, what accounts for the difference in these costs; (cc) were the three named individuals asked the same total number of questions and with the same exact wording; (dd) in addition to these individuals referenced in part (z), who else was asked and on what date with respect to the question of the eligibility of a federal judge to assume a Quebec seat on the SCC; (ee) with respect to the statement of the Minister of Justice in the House on October 17, 2013, "The eligibility and the opinion that we have received from Mr. Justice Ian Binnie, which has also been endorsed by Supreme Court Justice Louise Charron, as well as a noted constitutional expert Peter Hogg, is very clear", (i) when were Justice Charron and Professor Hogg provided the opinion for Justice Binnie, (ii) how long did they have to review it before reporting to the government;
(ff) with respect to the statement of the Minister of Justice before the Standing Committee on Justice and Human Rights on November 21, 2013, that "legal opinion prepared by respected former Supreme Court Justice Ian Binnie which [...] was supported by his former colleague, the Honourable Louise Charron, as well as by noted constitutional expert, Professor Peter Hogg", (i) did the Minister use "supported" to mean "endorsed", (ii) did the Minister mean that all conclusions were agreed in wholeheartedly by those cited; (gg) with respect to the Minister's comments before the Ad Hoc Committee on the Appointment of SCC Justices that "I would add that this opinion was reviewed by several eminently qualified individuals, including the Honourable Louise Charron as a former judge of the Supreme Court of Canada herself. The opinion was also reviewed by Professor Peter Hogg, a recognized constitutional expert and author. Both of them expressed unequivocal support for Mr. Justice Binnie's conclusions", is "several" used to mean "more than two but not many" as defined by the Canadian Oxford Dictionary (2 ed.) and (i) if so, who other than Justice Charron and Prof. Hogg is included in the class of "eminently qualified individuals" who reviewed this opinion, (ii) if not, in what sense was the word "several" used in this context and to convey what; (hh) was Justice Binnie informed that his opinion would be made public and, if so, was this part of the arrangement the government made with him; (ii) can Justice Charron publicly release her opinion that was rendered to the government and, if not, why not; (jj) can Professor Hogg publicly release his opinion that was rendered to the government and, if not, why not; (kk) will the government release the opinions of Justice Charron and Prof. Hogg and, if not, why not; (ll) how did the government decide from whom to seek opinions; (mm) how did the government determine whose opinions to release; (nn) other than the Minister of Justice, who in the Department of Justice, in the Prime Minister's Office, and in the Office of the Commissioner for Federal Judicial Affairs Canada reviewed the Charron and Hogg opinions; (oo) where are the Charron and Hogg opinions currently stored, who has access to them, and what is the plan for retention; (pp) concerning the Selection Panel that considered Justice Marc Nadon’s candidacy, (i) how were members of the Panel chosen, (ii) what qualifications were sought, (iii) how did each of the members of the Panel meet the qualifications in (ii), (iv) what measures are in place to ensure that Aboriginal candidates are considered in the work of the Panel; (qq) who was the Executive Director of the SCC Selection Committee for this process and how was this person selected; (rr) what protections were in place to ensure that members of the Panel elevated mid-summer to Cabinet were not influenced by their Cabinet role in the work of the Panel;
(ss) with respect to the Prime Minister’s statement regarding Justice Nadon in the House on April 1, 2014, that “pendant les consultations, tous les partis de la Chambre étaient d'accord avec l'idée qu'on pouvait nommer un Québécois de la Cour fédérale à la Cour suprême”, (i) to what consultations is the Prime Minister referring, (ii) was the Prime Minister part of these consultations and if so in what capacity, (iii) if the Prime Minister was not part of these consultations, by what means was he informed of their contents, (iv) to what extent are these consultations public, (v) if these consultations were public, in what manner can records of them be accessed, (vi) if these consultations were not public, are their contents protected by any privilege or confidentiality agreement and if so, what are the consequences for any individual breaking consultation confidentiality, if any, (vii) on what basis was this statement made, (viii) how can a party involved in these consultations express its disagreement “avec l'idée qu'on pouvait nommer un Québécois de la Cour fédérale à la Cour supreme”, (ix) how can a disagreement, such as the Prime Minister suggests did not occur, be made public within the ordinary course of consultations; and (tt) with respect to the Prime Minister’s statement in the House on April 1, 2014, that “Évidemment, c'est une grande surprise de découvrir qu'il y a une règle tout à fait différente pour le Québec que pour le reste du Canada”, (i) when was the Prime Minister first informed that there exists a different rule for the appointment of judges from Quebec vis-a-vis the rest of Canada to the Supreme Court of Canada, (ii) did the Prime Minister personally solicit, receive, and review legal advice on this point within the context of the Marc Nadon appointment, (iii) what steps were taken to mitigate any such surprises that might arise during the appointment process? — Sessional Paper No. 8555-412-437.