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Irwin Cotler, MP

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Order Paper Question Q-1217 – Supreme Court Appointments

Posted on May 1, 2015

Prof. Cotler has submitted the following question about the process for replacing Justice Marshall Rothstein on the Supreme Court of Canada. The government has 45 days to respond.

Q-12172 — April 28, 2015 — Mr. Cotler (Mount Royal) — With regard to the process for filling the vacancy on the Supreme Court of Canada that will be created by the retirement of Justice Marshall Rothstein on August 31, 2015: (a) when did the government learn of Justice Rothstein’s intention to retire; (b) how did the government learn of Justice Rothstein’s intention to retire; (c) what steps has the government taken to find a replacement for Justice Rothstein; (d) when were each of the steps in (c) taken; (e) what individuals, agencies, organizations, or other governments has the government consulted with regard to developing a process to find Justice Rothstein’s replacement; (f) what individuals, agencies, organizations, or other governments has the government consulted with regard to choosing Justice Rothstein’s replacement; (g) when did the consultations in (e) occur; (h) when did the consultations in (f) occur; (i) what individuals, agencies, organizations, or other governments will the government consult with regard to developing a process to find Justice Rothstein’s replacement; (j) what individuals, agencies, organizations, or other governments will the government consult with regard to choosing Justice Rothstein’s replacement; (k) when will the consultations in (i) occur; (l) when will the consultations in (j) occur; (m) what date has the government set by which Justice Rothstein’s replacement must be nominated; (n) what date has the government set by which Justice Rothstein’s replacement must be appointed; (o) by what date does the government intend to nominate Justice Rothstein’s replacement; (p) by what date does the government intend to appoint Justice Rothstein’s replacement; (q) when were the dates in (m) to (p) set; (r) who set the dates in (m) to (p); (s) based on what factors were the dates in (m) to (p) set; (t) if no dates have been set regarding the nomination or appointment of Justice Rothstein’s replacement, why have no dates been set; (u) based on what criteria has the government evaluated candidates to replace Justice Rothstein, and if no evaluations have occurred thus far, based on what criteria will the government evaluate candidates to replace Justice Rothstein; (v) how do the criteria in (u) differ from those used to evaluate candidates in the appointment processes that led to the appointments of (i) Justice Wagner, (ii) Justice Nadon, (iii) Justice Gascon, (iv) Justice Côté; (w) what materials have been sought from the candidates to replace Justice Rothstein; (x) what materials will be sought from the candidates to replace Justice Rothstein; (y) how do the materials in (w) and (x) differ from those sought from candidates in the processes that led to the appointments of (i) Justice Wagner, (ii) Justice Nadon, (iii) Justice Gascon, (iv) Justice Côté; (z) if the materials in (w) and (x) differ from those sought from candidates in the processes that led to the appointments of Justices Wagner, Nadon, Gascon and Côté, (i) why were changes made, (ii) who decided to make these changes, (iii) when was that decision made; (aa) what process has been or will be used to evaluate candidates and make an appointment to replace Justice Rothstein; (bb) in what way does the process to replace Justice Rothstein differ from the processes that led to the appointments of Justices Wagner, Nadon, Gascon and Côté; (cc) if the process to replace Justice Rothstein differs from the processes that led to the appointments of Justices Wagner, Nadon, Gascon and Côté, (i) why was the process changed, (ii) who decided to change it, (iii) when was the decision made to change it; (dd) in what way have parliamentarians been involved, or in what way will they be involved, in the process to replace Justice Rothstein; (ee) what goals have been served by parliamentary involvement in previous Supreme Court appointment processes; (ff) how will the goals in (ee) be served in the process to replace Justice Rothstein; (gg) in what way have members of the legal community been involved, or in what way will they be involved, in the process to replace Justice Rothstein; (hh) other than parliamentarians and members of the legal community, who has been or will be involved in the process to replace Justice Rothstein, and in what way; (ii) will candidates to replace Justice Rothstein be reviewed by an advisory panel; (jj) if candidates to replace Justice Rothstein will be reviewed by an advisory panel, (i) when will the panel be constituted, (ii) of how many members will it be comprised, (iii) who will select its members, (iv) based on what criteria will its members be selected, (v) what will be its mandate, (vi) who will set its mandate, (vi) will its membership include parliamentarians; (kk) will the candidate nominated to replace Justice Rothstein appear before a parliamentary committee, ad hoc or otherwise; (ll) has the process for appointing Supreme Court judges been reviewed by the government since the appointment of Justice Côté; (mm) if the process for appointing Supreme Court judges has been reviewed by the government since the appointment of Justice Côté, (i) when did the review begin, (ii) when did the review end, (iii) who conducted the review, (iv) what groups and individuals participated in the review, (v) what were the objectives of the review, (vi) what were the outcomes of the review; (nn) what has been, or what will be, the cost of the process to replace Justice Rothstein; (oo) what is the breakdown of the cost in (nn); (pp) in what way will the process to replace Justice Rothstein be (i) transparent, (ii) accountable, (iii) inclusive; and (qq) will the process used for the appointment of Justice Rothstein’s replacement be used for future appointments?

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