You can add Beverley McLachlin's name to Stephen Harper's Enemies List. In case your memory needs refreshing, Errol Mendes reviews some of the prominent names on that list:
The growing range of individuals that have had to endure such smears have included: academics (myself included); environmental groups labelled as extremists and radicals funded by foreign entities; public servants just doing their job, such as Linda Keen, the former head of the nuclear safety watchdog, Peter Tinsley, the head of the Military Police Complaints Commission and Richard Colvin, the foreign service officer who testified on the treatment of Afghan detainees; Chief Electoral Officer Marc Mayrand for alleged bias; and, astonishingly, former auditor general Sheila Fraser, who has faced innuendos of conflicts of interest.
If there is a common thread which ties all of these names together, it is contempt for expert opinion -- something that has been front and centre of late in the debate over the Fair Elections Act.
Ottawa lawyer Michael Spratt notes that it is not unusual to seek the chief Justice's advice on legal matters. She did not get into specifics. She was simply suggesting that Harper read the law:
Adam Dodek, vice-dean of the University of Ottawa law school and a constitutional scholar, says that there is nothing unusual about contact between the chief justice and the government: “Every minister of justice in this Conservative government and in its predecessor Liberal governments going back at least 15 years has stated publicly that they have consulted with the chief justice of Canada about appointments to the Supreme Court of Canada.”
Mr. Harper’s contention that contact with the chief justice would be inappropriate is simply not supportable and grossly misleading. At best, the prime minister is engaging in revisionist history of the worse kind.
But, then, Mr. Harper exists in a fact free universe. And, As Thomas Mulcair noted last week, "He always sees a conspiracy when someone tells him no."