OTTAWA – The Senate is scrambling to provide the RCMP with all emails from four senators implicated in an alleged deal to pay off Mike Duffy’s ineligible expenses and whitewash a report on the matter.
The Mounties have obtained a court order for the emails but there was a possibility the Senate could have refused to provide them, claiming parliamentary privilege.
However, Noel Kinsella, Speaker of the Senate, says he’s decided parliamentary privilege should not be used as a shield to stymie a police investigation.
Hence, he says the Senate is co-operating fully and will provide the emails within 30 days of the Nov. 20 court order.
The RCMP wants to see the emails sent and received by Duffy, Marjory LeBreton, former government leader in the Senate, and two key members of the Senate’s internal economy committee which oversaw the audit into Duffy’s expenses: former committee chair David Tkachuk and Carolyn Stewart Olsen.
The bureaucracy that supports the Prime Minister’s Office is also scrambling to hand over emails from former PMO legal counsel Benjamin Perrin, which the Privy Council Office says it mistakenly told the RCMP had been deleted when Perrin left the government in March.