Conservatives call for Comeau case referral to Supreme Court
Opposition says case about interprovincial alcohol movement can clarify Section 121 of Constitution
The federal Conservatives are calling for the Trudeau government to refer a New Brunswick court case dealing with the interprovincial movement of alcohol for personal use to the Supreme Court of Canada.
Official Opposition Deputy Leader Denis Lebel and interprovincial trade critic Dan Albas said the case of Gerard Comeau can be used to clarify Section 121 of the Constitution dealing the interprovincial trade.
The Supreme Court "should also comment on which products, jurisdictions and types of barriers are covered by the Comeau ruling," Albas said in a statement released on Monday.
The province's liquor regulations only allow for the importation of 12 pints of beer or one bottle of alcohol or wine for personal use.
- New Brunswick appeals border booze court ruling
- New Brunswick judge throws oout cross-border booze limits
LeBlanc ruled the liquor regulation violated free-trade provisions in Section 121 of the Constitution Act, which states: "All articles of the growth, produce or manufacture of any of the provinces shall, and from and after the Union, be admitted free into each of the other provinces."
On Friday, the New Brunswick government announced it is seeking leave to appeal the Comeau ruling directly to the New Brunswick Court of Appeal.
"It is time to free the beer and free the Canadian economy," said Lebel. "Free trade between Canadians is a constitutional right."
The Conservatives point to a report from the Canadian Federation of Independent Business that estimates internal trade barriers cost the Canadian economy $14 billion.