So the office was paid for by the party. The House of Commons staff knew the people were working in Montreal. There was no attempt to hide the fact that the Montreal office was there. In fact, there was a media event to promote the opening of it. We've established that there were clear separations between the functions of people who were on the parliamentary side versus those who were on the partisan side.
I'd be interested to see where the government goes from here, because I don't know what's left. Everything that has been raised has been adequately covered off piece by piece by piece—minus the rhetoric, I grant you. You've removed the rhetoric. You're left with what I just said, which is that there's no House of Commons money involved in the paying of this office; the House of Commons staff knew that our staff were working in Montreal; there was no attempt to hide the fact that this office was there, open, and functioning; and lastly, there is a clear separation between the work being done by those on the parliamentary side and those on the partisan side. We've established that. It will be interesting to see where else the government wants to go, because so far they're not getting anywhere.
Now, my question is this. To put it in a broader context, Mr. Mulcair, I want to take you back. You mentioned in your opening remarks the reason why you opened up these offices and why you were looking at the Saskatchewan office. I want to put that in the context of a government that is opening up ministerial offices all across the country—17, I believe. So I would like you to speak to that objective you had in light of what the government was doing—with 100% taxpayer money, by the way. I'm not saying that's partisan work, but it's a presence and they're there.
Then I'd also like to put it in the context of what your budget is, as the leader of the official opposition, and what the budget of the Prime Minister's Office is, and what the increases have been to your budget versus the increases to the cabinet budget the Prime Minister has access to.
I wonder if you would respond, Mr. Mulcair.