April 17, 2013: Happy Birthday to Canada’s Charter of Rights

On Sunday Justin Trudeau became the newest leader of the Liberal Party of Canada. Canadians over the age of 55, have been denied “Freedom 55” by accident of where they were born, remember the day Justin was born. Yes, he is the son of former Prime Minister Pierre Trudeau. Love him or hate him, Trudeau Senior made his mark on Canada. His legacy was the “Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms”. At the time the Charter was enacted, the focus was on “individual rights”. Interestingly, many opposed the Charter because they thought that to give Canadians individual rights would make the country too much like the United States. Most would agree, on balance that the Charter has been a good thing for Canada.

Peter Hogg recently expressed his view that a FATCA IGA would violate the Canadian Charter of Rights. What an argument. The idea that the Charter of Rights would now be used to protect Canadian sovereignty by prohibiting discrimination against U.S. citizens. Or as was said in an earlier post on FATCA and the Canadian Charter of Rights:

Prime Minister Trudeau  would not have imagined that the Charter might be used to shield Canada from the U.S. FATCA attack. Talk about the law of unintended consequences … ! S. 15 of the Charter may be used to prevent the Government of Canada from entering into a FATCA IGA.

Time will tell whether Justin is a “chip off the old block”. We know how Pierre Trudeau would have responded to the FATCA attack on Canada’s sovereignty. Will Justin follow in his father’s footsteps. Somebody should get his position and the position of the Liberal Party on FATCA. As far as I know, they have been silent.

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