Ottawa

'Disregard for the rule of law'

The Federal Court has ruled that the government’s attempt to reform the Canadian Wheat Board violates the legislation that governs the board.

In a ruling today, Federal Court Judge Douglas Campbell said the government violated the Canadian Wheat Board Act by not holding a vote among farmers before introducing legislation eliminating the Wheat Board’s monopoly position. Judge Campbell admonished the government for not consulting with farmers and “simply pushing ahead” with plans to essentially abolish the board. “Had a meaningful consultative process been engaged to find a solution which meets the concerns of the majority, the present legal action might not have been necessary,” the judge ruled. He added that the government had to be “held accountable for [its] disregard for the rule of law.”

During QP this afternoon, the NDP’s Pat Martin suggested that perhaps the Goldring precedent—removing oneself from caucus on the allegation that one broke the law—should apply here.