Canada, Senate Debates, “Legality of Proposed Resolution”, 32nd Parl, 1st Sess (15 October 1980)


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Date: 1980-10-15
By: Canada (Parliament)
Citation: Canada, Senate Debates, 32nd Parl, 1st Sess, 1980 at 863.
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SENATE DEBATES — October 15, 1980

[Page 863]

THE CONSTITUTION DEBATE

LEGALITY OF PROPOSED RESOLUTION

Hon. Jacques Flynn (Leader of the Opposition): Honourable senators, I have a question for the Leader of the Government. In view of the decision taken yesterday by five premiers, who may be joined by two others, if not more, to place before the courts the legality of the resolution which the present government intends to push through Parliament, is it the intention of the government to proceed notwithstanding, or would the government rather join with the premiers in seeking the opinion of the courts on the legality of its intentions?

Hon. Raymond J. Perrault (Leader of the Government): Honourable senators, the government is satisfied that its anticipated action is legal, It is the intention of the government to proceed with its plan concerning the proposed resolution and the motion now being debated in the other place.

Honourable senators are aware that if governments were precluded from initiating action each time an appeal was filed with the courts on behalf of an individual or another level of government, it could effectively frustrate the actions of all governments. Therefore the government is proceeding in the reasonable certainty that its action is legal.

Senator Flynn: Is that certainty equal to the certainty the government had some years ago when it introduced Bill C-60 and felt that it could proceed in the manner provided under that bill, only to find that the Supreme Court disagreed with the government view?

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