No, Doug Ford Is Not Defying Constitutional Law

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Doug Ford’s Ontario government is being roundly lambasted for the use of the override provisions of the Constitution. And rightly so. But critics are doing so for all the wrong reasons. They are confusing and collapsing democratic politics and constitutional law.

As much as the critics would wish otherwise, use of the override is not a flouting of the Constitution or the rule of law. The override is as much a part of the Canadian Constitution as the s.15 equality guarantee or s.2’s freedom of expression. There would have been no Charter without s.33’s override provision.

The problem is that people are getting mixed up about two distinct issues: the constitutional question of what governments can or cannot do as a matter of constitutional law, and what they should and should not do as a matter of democratic politics. Mr. Ford can likely do what he proposes as a constitutional matter, but he should not be doing so as a political matter.

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The Globe and Mail