Mr. Speaker, I thank my colleague and NDP counterpart, the House Leader of the Official Opposition, for his question.
I agree with my colleague that the Conservatives are remaining silent. That is probably because the incessant talking points that are cranked out in the Prime Minister's Office really have nothing to say in the face of RCMP sworn affidavits given to a criminal court judge.
It is increasingly difficult, even for the great talent in the Prime Minister's Office, to fabricate talking points that Conservative members can get up and repeat in the House. I would suspect as the debate unfolds today that there will be very few Conservatives who will want to participate in the debate and very few who will be able to defend the actions of their own leader, as we have seen in media reports.
I agree with my colleague that the characters in this cover-up, whom we have called the “fraud squad” and the “dirty dozen”, the different people who were intimately involved both in the potentially criminal acts and the three Criminal Code violations identified so far by the RCMP, were intimately tied to the Prime Minister. He selected those people. He appointed some of them to the Senate. He has continued to give them immense responsibility in his office. However, when the heat came on, obviously he was unable to fire all of them, maybe because they knew too much, so they were sort of shifted laterally and then up a bit. They probably received pay raises by assuming senior positions in the offices of Conservative cabinet ministers.
I would also agree with my colleague that there needs to be full accountability in the Senate. Ultimately, we may disagree on the disposition of the upper chamber, but I think there is no disagreement whatsoever on the idea that the senators need to be fully accountable and that those who behaved in a way that the RCMP said was less than truthful in interviews with the police should also face consequences. I think that when the police finally get access to those emails and correspondence the list of people potentially charged in this criminal conspiracy will grow and we may very well see Conservative senators facing criminal charges as well.