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Senator Pierrette Ringuette Calls upon the Senate to take Action with Respect to Statements made by the Leader of the Government in the Senate

Today in the Senate, Senator Ringuette raised a question of privilege with respect to statements made by the Leader of the Government in the Senate on May 3, 2006. To justify her absence during Question Period on May 2nd - budget day, Senator Marjory LeBreton said she was attending a special cabinet meeting. Senator Ringuette said:


“Mr. Speaker, I have on hand a videotape of the House of Common’s proceedings during the time the Leader of the Government alleges she was in Cabinet meeting during Question Period of the House of Commons.  As the Journals and videotape indicates, all Ministers but one were in the House of Commons during that same period.  Mr. Speaker, I have serious doubts that a meeting of one Minister from the House of Commons and 2 Ministers from the Senate amount to a Cabinet Meeting, special or not.”


The Senator further added: “After reviewing the Leader of the Government’s statements in the Journals and verifying the location of the Prime Minister and cabinet members at the time Senator Lebreton claimed to be in their presence, I have come to the conclusion that the Leader of the Government in the Senate is in contempt of Parliament by misleading this House.” 

This point of privilege is at the hearth of this conservative’s government’s self-proclaimed accountability.  Senator Ringuette raised this serious issue because she believes that Parliament is an institution that must maintain the confidence of the people and that the people must believe that parliamentarians act with integrity and honesty at all times.