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Another Conservative judicial appointment faces a legal challenge

Supreme Court of Canada
The Supreme Court of Canada on Friday April 25, 2014 in Ottawa. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld

OTTAWA – The lawyer who helped derail a federal nomination to the Supreme Court of Canada is challenging the legitimacy of another Conservative judicial appointment.

Toronto lawyer Rocco Galati and the Constitutional Rights Centre are asking the Federal Court of Canada to declare Robert Mainville of the Federal Court of Appeal ineligible to sit on the Quebec Court of Appeal.

READ MORE: Peter MacKay confirms, then denies, Justice Robert Mainville headed to the Supreme Court

Galati’s submission, filed Monday, argues that the Constitution forbids the appointment of a Federal Court of Appeal judge to the Quebec Court of Appeal.

Galati says the government is trying to shuffle Mainville to the Quebec appeal court before appointing him to the Supreme Court of Canada later this year, filling a pending vacancy from the province.

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He calls it a cynical and flagrant subversion of the Constitution.

In the House of Commons, Justice Minister Peter MacKay defended Mainville’s qualifications, saying the government is guided by merit and legal excellence.

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