I know, I know – Colleague Wells has already liveblogged it, but just to give you a sense of our cuddly, forgiving Prime Minister:
Question – Prime Minister, you’ve admitted to saying that the documents were in a non secure location. But surely there are other issues at play here with Mme Couillard going on TVA this evening and the allegations that she was involved with organized crime and bidding on government contracts for airport security. I mean, was that what was really the final stroke?
Right Hon. Stephen Harper:No. This is about one thing, and that is a failure to uphold expected standards on government documents. It is a very serious mistake regardless of who the Minister is, regardless of personal life, to leave classified documents in an unsecured location. And this is a serious error. The Minister has recognized this error himself and offered to resign.
Let me just be very clear about this. This is not to do with the Minister’s private life or the life of a private citizen. 99% of which I think is completely off bounds. I don’t think it matters who a Minister is dating. I don’t think it matters anything about the private life of some private citizen. What matters here is that rules respecting government classified documents were broken.
It obviously was not done on purpose. It was a mistake. But it doesn’t matter. It was clearly done and that has to be treated appropriately. There are precedents and this obviously is a warning to all Ministers.