If I can get this straight, are we looking at tasking some of the busiest people in the country with ordering all documents, including briefing notes, memos, emails, text messages and summaries of phone calls, in 15 or 17 days? Are we really interested, as a committee, in tasking the busiest people in Canada with all of this?
This will be thousands and thousands of documents. This is beyond transparency; this is a fishing expedition. I think what we should be doing here is.... Mr. Davies talked about “order” not “request”, but we've never asked for anything that we haven't received. I feel that we should request prior to an order, and if we don't get what we seek, then order it. Use the power of the committee to order it then.
This is such an overreach for a committee that's been so far working really, really well. Our officials, who are sitting here waiting to brief us, have been amazing on short notice. We had a conversation a day and a half ago about inviting them back, because it's important. Mr. Kitchen and Marcus talked about the importance of having them here, and we all agreed.
We have had conversations where we were supposed to have a minister for an hour. We heard that it's important to members that the minister be invited for two hours, and we said yes, okay, if that's what folks around the table want.
It just feels like this is a real overreach, and, again, taking the busiest people in the country and asking them to dig down from the last four weeks everything that they've done, said, talked about on the telephone—everything. To me this just seems ludicrous.
If that's what the committee determines they want, we'll task these incredibly busy people with this. But if this isn't a fishing expedition, then I don't know what is.
I'm interested to hear from some of the members across the way what it is specifically that they feel they're searching for.