48 U.B.C. L. Rev. 541 (2015)
Blunting the Edge: Federalism, Criminal Law, and the Importance of Legislative History after the Reference Re Assisted Human Reproduction Act

handle is hein.journals/ubclr48 and id is 557 raw text is: 








    BLUNTING THE EDGE: FEDERALISM, CRIMINAL
      LAW,  AND   THE   IMPORTANCE OF LEGISLATIVE
      HISTORY AFTER THE REFERENCE RE ASSISTED
                HUMANREPRODUCTIONACT

                          DAVE   SNOW'





I. INTRODUCTION

The   Canadian attempt to make  national law for assisted reproductive
technologies  (ARTs)  provides a cautionary tale. After 15 years of
concerted  policymaking efforts, in 2004 Parliament passed the Assisted
Human Reproduction Actl a comprehensive piece of legislation
containing   criminal prohibitions and  a  framework  for national
regulation. Just over 6 years later, however, a majority of Supreme Court
of  Canada  justices ruled in Reference Re Assisted Human Reproduction
Act2  that most regulatory, administrative, and licensing aspects of the
AHR Act   were ultra vires the federal Parliament, as they were in pith and
substance  related to health rather than criminal law. Dreams of a
uniform  national policy were dashed, the federal criminal law power was
diminished,  and  the onus  was  put on  provinces to regulate this
important  field.




t   Assistant Professor, Department of Political Science, University of Guelph,
     snow@uoguelph.ca. I would like to thank Frangoise Baylis, Rainer Knopff, Mark
     Harding, Tim Anderson, and this journal's anonymous reviewers for their comments
     on earlier drafts of this paper. This work was supported financially by the Killam
     Trusts at the University of Calgary and at Dalhousie University.
 1   SC 2004, c 2 [AHR Act].
 2  2010 SCC 61, [2010] 3 SCR457 [ReAHRA].

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