Mr. Speaker, I wish to comment very briefly to add to what the hon. minister said.
First, in terms of the sub judice convention and citation 505 of Beauchesne's, it is obvious its purpose is to protect the parties in the case before the court. A member of Parliament has asked a question in the House to which the answer was the position the government would be taking vis-à-vis a particular case in an appeal.
It stands to reason that if the government is appealing the case, it is appealing it because it feels the original decision was in error; otherwise there would be no point in appealing a particular decision.
Second, the reference to the Oulette case is extremely inappropriate; it does not apply to this case. That particular issue had nothing to do with a comment made on the floor of the House of Commons, as the Speaker will obviously determine when he reviews the material surrounding that case.
Mr. Speaker, finally, you will recall through all cases I remember in the House of Commons where the sub judice rule has been invoked, it has been invoked and usually ruled on by the Speaker to ensure members do not ask questions in the House that are sub judice.
If there is a case to be made here, it is that the question should not have been asked as opposed to should not have been answered. Therefore, I am forced to turn the table around and to urge the Speaker that if someone is admonished, it should be in such a way as to remind the hon. members not to ask questions when the questions are sub judice.