HomeAuthor Archives: Asher Honickman

Author Archives: Asher Honickman

Khadr Debate on YouTube

My debate with CCLA lawyer Rob De Luca has been uploaded to YouTube and can be accessed here. The video can also be accessed on the Runnymede Society website here. My take on the Khadr Settlement can also be read here. Thank you again to the Runnymede Society for hosting the debate and to Joanna Baron, President of the Runnymede ...

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Debating the Khadr Settlement at Western

Tomorow, I will be traveling to London to debate the following proposition: “The Trudeau government’s decision to award Omar Khadr a $10.5m settlement in July 2017 was an error in law and policy.” My opponent will be Rob De Luca, counsel for the Canadian Civil Liberties Association. I will take the position that the settlement was based on a misapplication ...

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A Wise Decision in Retrospect

The Ontario Court of Appeal handed down two seminal decisions last month. In the companion cases, Cobb v. Long Estate and El-Khodr v. Lackie,  the Court of Appeal (hopefully) settled the doctrine in a number of areas relevant to motor vehicle accident (“MVA”) litigation. Cobb and El-Khodr were appeals arising from the assessment damages, prejudgment interest, and costs in the context ...

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“Watertight Compartments” Has Now Been Published

I am pleased to announce that my paper, “Watertight Compartments: Getting Back to the Constitutional Division of Powers” has now been published in the Alberta Law Review. Per the abstract: This article offers a fresh examination of the constitutional division of powers. The author argues that sections 91 and 92 of the Constitution Act, 1867 establish exclusive jurisdictional spheres — ...

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The Legal Case Against the Khadr Settlement

Was the Government of Canada’s decision to settle with Omar Khadr for $10.5 million a pragmatic choice that saved the taxpayers millions in the long run? This is certainly what the government and some commentators would have us believe. If true, this would provide a sensible justification for the settlement. A multi-million dollar payout to an individual who previously participated ...

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Debating Human Rights with Professor Pardy

Recently, I had the pleasure of discussing and debating human rights law with Professor Bruce Pardy of my alma mater, Queen’s Law. The topic of the debate was Parliament’s Bill C-16, which amended the Canada Human Rights Act and Criminal Code, along with recent amendments to the Ontario Human Rights Code. The relevant amendments in both human rights statutes concern ...

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On Canada Day, Let’s Celebrate our Constitution

The Government of Canada has spent a considerable sum to promote “Canada 150” over the last few months, but it has done next to nothing to explain to Canadians what exactly it is we are celebrating. July 1 marks the date that the British North America Act, 1867 came into force. The B.N.A. Act, as it was commonly known, endowed Canada with its own ...

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Alberta Law Review to Publish “Watertight Compartments”

I am very pleased to report that my paper, “Watertight Compartments: Getting Back to the Constitutional Division of Powers,” has been selected for publication in the upcoming edition of the Alberta Law Review. In this paper I argue that ss. 91 and 92 of the Constitution Act, 1867 (formerly the B.N.A. Act, 1867) establish mutually exclusive jurisdictional spheres – what the Privy ...

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In Defence of the Notwithstanding Clause and Saskatchewan’s Decision to Use It

Summer is fast approaching and, in keeping with that season’s custom (though not yet a convention), I thought it best to engage Leonid Sirota in constitutional debate. Last year, we went a few rounds on section 7 of the Charter. This year, the hot topic is s.33 of the Charter, otherwise known as the “notwithstanding clause,” which states that Parliament or ...

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The Perils of the Purposive Approach

The Supreme Court of Canada has repeatedly said that, in interpreting statutes, courts should undertake a unified textual, contextual and purposive approach. Under this approach “the words of an Act are to be read in their entire context and in their grammatical and ordinary sense harmoniously with the scheme of the Act, the object of the Act, and the intention ...

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