François Legault knows judges

François Legault knowsît judges&nbsp ;

CHRONICLE – A disaster about to happen, the Anglos would say. He has, in fact, already shown his face. The rest – if the trend continues – will follow shortly.

The beginning of the disaster? The appointment of Simon Jolin-Barrette to Justice, replacing (the nevertheless competent) Sonia LeBel. Despite an appalling record at Immigration (absurd test of values, 18,000 files illegally shredded, the PEQ fiasco damaging Quebec's international reputation), the ambitious man was nevertheless going to convince, with blows of ego, the office de Legault to finally grant him the keys to the ministry-darling. 

We took it badly. 

Because there is no need to face Papineau in order to convince oneself that a junior lawyer, with no practical experience and a propensity for conflict at all costs, fitted rather badly, if at all, with the required requirements. 

Unsurprisingly, we were thus to witness, without delay, the distressing spectacle anticipated: in a hitherto iconoclastic refusal to collaborate, the impetuous minister would succeed in seizing a significant portion of the judicial power, Barreau du Québec as a bonus. Because beyond the headlines surrounding the charred rag of his relationship with the sensitive Chief Justice of the Court of Quebec, other stories, also symptomatic of a style of management at odds with respect for the separation of powers, circulate in droves. Their highlight? The decision of the Superior Court, last spring, finding that the minister had acted illegally in a recent appointment process.  

Behind the said decision, and anxious to reiterate the fundamental guarantee of the independence of the institution of which she is the guarantor, Chief Justice Rondeau was going to respond, manu militari, to the maneuvers of Jolin-Barrette: the number of days of hearing where its judges will have to sit will be reduced by around 15%, in order to leave more time for writing their judgments. Perfectly acceptable and legitimate, if you wish my opinion, the rhythm imposed on the magistrates, few enough, being almost delirious.

The observation, in fact, is as easy as it is disturbing: according to the Honorable Rondeau, a minimum of 41 judges is required ipso facto, just to avoid a debacle. The amount required? 24 million. A handful of change. Kind 400 times less than a third link having the effect of amplifying traffic. Like 400 times less than the billion increase obtained by medical specialists, an agreement that the Legault government had nevertheless promised to tear up without delay. Like 300 times less than the two election candy vouchers sent in 2022. 

And as an evil rarely occurs alone: ​​the glaring lack of clerks or special constables, gone to work towards other more lucrative skies, accentuates the features of an already epic crisis in which Justice has been plunged since the era Jolin-Barrette. 

Numbers? Up to 64,000 files could this year, at the Court of Quebec alone, bear the possible costs of a stay of proceedings. Files authorized, by definition, by the DPCP, therefore with a rational chance of success.

Only last Monday, at the Montreal courthouse, ten courtrooms in the Criminal Division had to remain closed for lack of staff. Among the cases postponed and thus at risk, the most important trial in the history of Quebec for a pedophile. 

Never left in terms of irony, Premier Legault, in an interview granted the same day, explained that he had spoken to judges “that he knows”, and that they are “embarrassed by the situation created by the bad decision of Chief Justice Lucie Rouleau [sic]”.

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Confident, he continues:                         There's going to be pressure from the judges on Judge Rouleau [re-sic] to say: come on, there's no good meaning, what we're doing right now, we're going to be hated by the people of Quebec.”

Publicly attacking, take 23456, a chief judge.

Denying him the minimal and legitimate resources for the proper functioning of Justice. 

Intervene unconstitutionally with judges-knowledge. 

Boast of violating, like of his minister, the guarantee of institutional independence . 

Be proud of it.

Let's keep going. 

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