Further to Mr. Mulcair’s concerns about the Supreme Court, Francoise Boivin wrote to the other parties to ask that they support the NDP’s call for disclosure. Stephane Dion has now responded for the Liberals.
On behalf of the Liberal caucus, thank you for your letter dated April 29, 2013.
In your letter, you suggested that the Liberal caucus join the New Democratic Party in asking the Conservative government what its response will be to the motion passed by the Quebec National Assembly on April 16, 2013.
This motion calls for the federal government to release archived documents related to the constitutional negotiations which led to the patriation of the Constitution in 1982.
However, the federal government has already stated that it does not intend to give policy directives to civil servants responsible for the application of the Access to Information Act.
We would like the government to hold firm in this respect. The Conservatives already have a tendency to politicize everything; there is no need to encourage them in this bad habit. The last thing we should do is politicize the application of the Access to Information Act.
We believe this act should be strengthened; however, this should be done as part of a global legislative review and not in response to one specific request for information.
In your letter, you criticize the Supreme Court. Your leader, Mr. Mulcair, took things one step further by accusing the Supreme Court of never having had the intention to seriously investigate the allegations of inappropriate communications between judges and members of the executive branch in 1981.
We are distancing ourselves from these irresponsible and unfounded comments. There is no doubt in our minds that the Supreme Court investigated as it should.
We suggest that you leave history to historians. But, let’s not be naïve: separatist leaders have a vested interest in reinforcing the idea of a scheme in the minds of Quebeckers in order to undermine their confidence in the Supreme Court, in Canada and in the Charter of Rights and Freedoms.
To summarize, your leader has demonstrated irresponsibility on three fronts by attempting to politicize the application of an act, by criticizing the Supreme Court without foundation and by playing the game of separatist leaders.
If the NDP wants to play that game, it will have to play it with the Bloc alone once again.
Hon. Stéphane Dion, MP
Liberal Democratic Reform and Intergovernmental Affairs critic