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Sinn Féin Bill provides for 'cooling-off period' for Attorneys General before appointment to the Supreme Court - Martin Kenny TD

22 November, 2020 - by Martin Kenny TD

Sinn Féin spokesperson on Justice Martin Kenny TD has today published a Bill to prevent any serving or former Attorney General from being appointed to judicial office in the superior courts without serving a cooling-off period of at least two years.

Teachta Kenny sxaid:

“The aim of this Bill is very clear - to prevent those vacating the position of Attorney General from being appointed straight away to superior judicial office; in the Supreme Court, the Court of Appeal or the High Court.

“The office of Attorney General is a political one and those holding the office are appointed by the government of the day. 

"Attorneys General are also involved heavily in drafting government legislation.

“It is obvious that an individual vacating the post and going to serve as a judge straight away in the superior courts could be tasked with adjudicating on the constitutionality or otherwise of legislation that they themselves have drafted.

“The current debacle concerning the government’s elevation of a former Attorney General to the Supreme Court is a case in point, and I would expect that if recent statements from government concerning the independence of the process of appointing such judges is valid, then the government parties will have no problem supporting this Bill.”

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