Tuesday, September 26, 2006


Yesterday I praised the federal government for scrapping the Court Challenges Program.

But not everybody was as happy as I.

Some people claim we need this $5 million program to help the “poor” launch court challenges.

But in fact, the CCP was not really about helping the poor, it was about helping left-wing special interest groups promote their own pet causes.

Adam Daifallah and Tasha Kheiriddin ably documented this in their book Rescuing Canada’s Right.

The authors point out that, “In some cases, CCP grants appear to have had little to do with financial need and much to do with connections and ideology. Feminist lawyer Beth Symes, received a CCP grant to challenge the fact that she couldn’t deduct the expenses for her nanny. At the time, Symes was earning a six-figure salary and was one of the founders of LEAF.”

Or as columnist Lorne Gunter recently pointed out, “The CCP and its fundees have become a very cozy, close-knit little clan. The program almost never funds cases brought by individuals, only those supported by powerful rights-seeking lobbies, and almost the same dozen or so lobbies.”

Meanwhile, conservatives were routinely shut out of the process.

The CCP was not only overtly ideological, it was also unfair.

Good riddance.


Miles Lunn said...

Perhaps it needed reform, but I still think there needs to be something to help the poor who have their rights violated. Besides two gay couples fighting for the right to marry is not some left wing special interest group, they are one's fighting for their rights. I am sure if someone used it for a conservative cause that violated the Charter, it could be used, or least it should allow it to.

Miles Lunn said...

I checked their website and they fund two primary areas, language rights and equality rights. As for language rights, this also applies to Anglophones in Quebec I might add. As for equality rights, I fully support those and I feel this is more aimed at the social conservatives than economic conservatives. The gay marriage issue received funding and I am proud the court overturned the traditional definition of marriage. This is not about subsidizing lefties, it is about defending one's rights.

Maybe if the Conservatives actually followed the Charter, this program would become redundant, now there's an idea.