"Mr. Speaker, this Liberal government has allowed judges to become the most powerful force in setting social policy in Canada. Whether it is by allowing convicted murders to vote or by changing fundamental institutions like marriage, this government has substituted the supremacy of an elected Parliament with unelected judges."
-- House of Commons, Feb. 23, 2004, speaking as Opposition justice critic
"Mr. Speaker, the point is this so-called independent panel does the screening for the minister. It checks Liberal credentials before he gets to see them. The minister may say that he has no knowledge of this, but the system has been set up to ensure that it is Liberals who make it to this final panel. If there is no truth to these allegations, why does he not refer the matter to the Judicial Council for a full hearing? This is a clear way to clean up this cloud on Canadian judges."
-- House of Commons, May 4, 2005, speaking as Opposition justice critic about Liberal judicial appointments
"Mr. Speaker, Canadians understand that this is a Liberal process, controlled by Liberals, for Liberals... When will the minister finally agree to an independent judicial appointments process that is transparent and public?"
-- House of Commons, May 17, 2005, speaking as Opposition justice critic about Liberal judicial appointments
"I have heard sufficient testimony that leads me to the conclusion that if we change the definition of marriage, it will have an impact on other rights. I am also confident that there are ways to address equality concerns without changing the definition of marriage. That is the Canadian way. That is what Canadians support. They support equality, but they also support this basic institution."
-- House of Commons, June 27, 2005, speaking as Opposition justice critic on same-sex marriage
"We are proposing measures to bring our laws into the 21st century and to provide the police with the lawful tools that they need. He can either stand with us or with the child pornographers."
-- House of Commons, Feb. 14, 2012, speaking as public safety minister to a Liberal MP questioning a Conservative online surveillance bill
"We are very concerned about the courts doing that, because illegal firearms -- especially those smuggled in from the United States... Minimum prison sentences are absolutely essential to create a strong deterrent against that kind of activity."
-- Golden West Radio, July 17, 2012, speaking as public safety minister chiding judges who struck down mandatory minimum penalties for gun crimes
"I'm not going to the Senate, I'm not retiring, I'm not going to the bench. I'm not leaving politics."
-- Quoted in the Winnipeg Free Press, Jan. 19, 2010, on rumours of a judicial appointment
"I keep hearing all the time that I'm retiring, and your newspaper is the one that keeps on saying it... Also, I have to sort of shrug my shoulders and say, 'You must know something that I don't know.' That's all I can say."
-- Quoted in the Winnipeg Free Press, July 2012, on rumours of a judicial appointment