Three highlights from this afternoon’s post-Question Period scrums:
NDP MP Peter Julian on Senate transparency: We’ve been saying constantly and consistently that if there have been previous audits that have been done, the government needs to demand their release. This is something that taxpayers need to know about. And I can tell you from my riding, there is an increasing level of concern right across this country, Canadians seeing this entitlement that’s coming through the Senate and they are very, very much concerned and opposed to what they’re seeing happening.
Liberal MP John McCallum on MP expense disclosure: I think a balance is needed. I think we reveal a great deal more detail than we did some years ago. Is there a need to go further? Perhaps. But I think right now, the amount of information MPs release is quite significant and the checks on us, in terms of when we submit expenses, are very difficult or assiduous, unlike for ministers. So I think the first place to reform is more in the checking of Ministers’ expenses.
NDP MP Paul Dewar on a new Office of Religious Freedom: We have heard about it for a number of years now. This is interesting to hear that they’re going to be announcing it this coming week when Parliament is not sitting. The concerns we have is that it’s taken a very long time to get going. The government keeps on talking about it but you know, hasn’t been able to actually tell us who’s going to lead it. So I’ll be interested in that.