Definitely, Madam Chair.
As I said, I can understand the frustration and the anger that the NDP must feel today in light of the fact that their leader, and basically almost their entire caucus, is potentially found in a very embarrassing and troubling situation where millions of taxpayers' dollars—hard-earned taxpayers' dollars. Let's be honest; the taxpayers work very, very hard.
I know that in my riding, Madam Chair, a lot of them get up at six o'clock in the morning and are at the GO train station by seven o'clock. They find their way to downtown Toronto. The farmers in my community are up at five o'clock in the morning. They milk their cows. They feed their chickens. They work all day, and they come in at nine o'clock at night and have dinner. All they ask is that the dollars they work hard for be treated with respect, Madam Chair. What they're seeing today, of course, in another parliamentary committee, is that the NDP and their leader just flagrantly disrespected Canadian taxpayers.
I know that the member opposite talked about our agents of Parliament in this bill. I think what Mr. Adler did was try to shine a light. He looked at something that he had heard a lot of people talk about. In fact, since I've been here I've heard a lot of members of the NDP talk about how they were worried that as the Liberals were being thrown out of office by the Canadian taxpayers for the gross misconduct they showed with taxpayers' dollars when they stole millions of dollars through the sponsorship scandal, they still have not turned over the $40 million, for which we have been looking very hard. I remember when I first came here that a lot of the members of the NDP talked about how the Liberals—who were fired by the people of Canada—flooded their staff into different departments and they were all worried about this. We heard a little bit of that as we were out and about.
Mr. Adler came forward with this bill. He followed the right process. Imagine that, Madam Chair. He brought it into the House of Commons for debate. He then appeared as a witness. He went and heard testimony from our agents of Parliament. He then went back, after he heard that testimony, took some more advice, spoke to people within his riding, and spoke to our caucus.
I know that we, as a committee, reached out to members opposite and we did what committees are supposed to do. We reviewed a bill and we came forward with amendments. Mr. Adler had a number of reasoned amendments. We've changed the bill based on what we heard at committee, and based on what he has heard as he has talked to people.
What we've seen over the last two days here by the members of the NDP is nothing short of a disgrace. It's just a flagrant attempt to try to move the channel away from what has been happening in Parliament over the last few days with respect to the gross and really quite ugly potential misconduct of the NDP when it comes to millions of taxpayers' dollars.
I was up early today, and I had the opportunity, Madam Chair—this is relevant to clause 9—to watch the Leader of the Opposition on CTV news. Question after question, he refused to answer. He just flat out refused to answer. Yesterday he even attacked the poor reporter from CTV news who questioned him about something with respect to him and his party being investigated by Elections Canada. He said that it wasn't true, that it was just a fabrication. Yet today, where is the Leader of the Opposition?
Imagine this, Madam Chair: The leader of the opposition is ordered to appear before a committee to account for the millions of dollars of potentially stolen taxpayers' dollars in offices. This is the best part of it, and I'm sure my colleagues saw this; this is one of the best parts: the Leader of the Opposition said, “Well, these people, they had cellphones that were in Montreal.”
Well, my gosh, guess where my cellphone is registered: Toronto, and do you know why? Because that's where most of my constituents are calling me from.
When you go to the House of Commons NDP office in Montreal, what do you see out front? You're not going to believe it. You won't see “House of Commons”. You'll see “NDP”. When you call that phone number, you're thanked for calling the NDP, and if you want to leave a donation, press two.
These are House of Commons resources.
They're doing House of Commons work in Saskatchewan, colleagues. I don't remember the last time the NDP actually had a member of Parliament in Saskatchewan. If anybody knows, please rise on a point of order and help me understand that. But apparently they're doing constituency work in Saskatchewan—