Nazanin Afshin-Jam defends husband Peter MacKay's comments on judges

Justice Minister Peter MacKay's wife says her husband hasn't received a fair shake over recent comments attributed to him about female judges.

Justice minister's wife says media reports of MacKay's remarks based on hearsay

Nazanin Afshin-Jam, left, says comments by her husband, Justice Minister Peter MacKay, on female judges have been misrepresented in the media. (Fred Chartrand/Canadian Press)

Justice Minister Peter MacKay's wife says her husband hasn't received a fair shake over recent comments attributed to him about female judges.

Nazanin Afshin-Jam MacKay has written to the Globe and Mail, saying MacKay's comments to a group of lawyers were misrepresented in the media.

The Toronto Star reported that MacKay indicated women were reluctant to become judges because they were afraid of being sent away on the circuit courts. MacKay has been widely criticized as a result. He has said he is trying to encourage more women to serve on the bench.

"I also would have been outraged if my husband had actually stated what he is accused of saying in media headlines about women judges," Afshin-Jam MacKay writes in the letter to the Globe and Mail.

Sews, does laundry

She writes that organizers of the lawyers' meeting have refused to release an audio recording of MacKay's remarks and instead ran to what she called the anti-Conservative media.

She says the media reports are based on hearsay and she likens them to a National Enquirer-TMZ mentality.

While in Antigonish, N.S., on Friday, MacKay was asked to respond to the comments he is alleged to have made about female judges and mothers. However, the justice minister refused to comment.

“I think enough has been said about what I didn’t say,” he told reporters.

Writing to the Globe and Mail, his wife portrays MacKay as himself fully involved in household chores:

"Even after often putting in 16-hour workdays as the main income earner in our household, he does all the sewing (his grandfather taught him), mows the lawn and takes out the garbage and recycling. He does most of the laundry and heavy cleaning in our house.

"We happily share housework and cooking. We both change diapers, bathe [their son] Kian, dress him, play with him and love him."

With files from CBC News


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