So far, it's 3-0 for Zunera Ishaq versus the Minister of Citizenship and Immigration.
I would have loved to have watched the proceedings in person (it's unfortunate that they were not broadcast as SCOC proceedings are). Reading between the lines, I sense reluctant Department of Justice lawyers tasked with overcoming a challenge analogous to cleansing the Augean stables.
The actual nub of the matter is quite straightforward. The Citizenship Act and the Citizenship Regulations allow the Citizenship Judge great flexibility in accommodating religious sentiment in the oath taking ceremony. Jason Kenney sought to change that by way of fiat -- introducing an Operational Bulletin that clearly restricts the discretion granted by legislation. There is no contest between the two. The latter supersedes, as it must, the former. Also it's important to note that neither the FC or the FCA decision turned on any Charter issues.
The government can of course, restrict veiling by promulgating valid Regulations. It chose not to do so, even though this is the only legal course of action available. Instead, it dug in its heels, appealing the Federal Court decision of Justice Boswell (a Harper government appointment and a three decade card carrying Conservative, and if I may say, an excellent appointment) to the Federal Court of Appeal which largely agreed with Justice Boswell.
The Federal Court of Appeal unanimously ruled from the Bench so that Ishaq could take the oath immediately and vote in the upcoming election (all 3 of the judges that heard the matter also appear to have been appointed by this government to the FCA). Rather than retreat, the government doubled down, seeking a stay of the decision. A stay is an extraordinary remedy... and the government lawyers had to know that they didn't have a leg to stand on. Nevertheless, they went forward, reminiscent perhaps of Custer's last stand at the Battle of the Little Bighorn.
The FCA dismissed their stay application (it can be found here). Having read it this morning, I am experiencing sympathy for the DoJ lawyers and grateful that being in private practice, I can actually say no to my clients and refuse self-immolation before a superior Court. Read paragraph 21 if you want to understand the paucity of their legal argument.
At this point the government is coming across as hapless Bollywood villains in the third act of a 70's, early 80's Bollywood movie.