As I've said many times in the House, Mr. Sorbara, I think it's the principle that underpins the rule of law. In our Canadian criminal justice system, we have always respected the independence of the police. They can never be subject to political interference.
I'll just give you an example that I cited today in the House. Two years ago, a member from the Conservative caucus rose in the House and demanded to know why the government hadn't released information on search warrants and production orders and even a closed warrant. I had to explain to him at that time that it is never the responsibility or the authority of the government to make decisions with respect to the release of that information. It is solely the purview of the police.
Throughout my career as a police officer, I've dealt with a number of sensitive national security matters and serious criminal matters as well, and briefing government is a very different thing, if I may, from receiving direction from the government. There have been a number of occasions in the past where perhaps a politician, not understanding that principle very clearly, made an attempt to recommend a certain course of action, but I think it is a principle always vigorously defended, and now well understood, that there are no circumstances in which there should be a political interference in operational or investigative decisions of the RCMP. It's an allegation made in the past, one we've learned from.
If I may, I would also cite Justice Linden's public inquiry into Ipperwash. I think there was a very clear articulation of where that line is and how it must never be crossed.