Suspended senators to lose credit cards, phones, offices
Mike Duffy, Pamela Wallin and Patrick Brazeau have to turn in Parliament Hill security passes
Senators Mike Duffy, Pamela Wallin and Patrick Brazeau will lose their security passes and access to their offices following their suspensions last night, Senate administration says.
The Senate voted yesterday to suspend the three for filing false expense claims.
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- How the Senate suspension votes went down on Twitter
- The Senate suspensions: How they voted
While some details of how the suspensions will work are still being determined, others are already clear.
Senate administration issued a statement today regarding the three banished senators:
- Their security passes and government credit cards will be cancelled.
- Mobile phones will be deactivated.
- They will only be allowed into their offices if accompanied by a Senate security guard.
By Wednesday afternoon, the suspended senators' office phones were already cut off.
The three will keep their medical benefits and life insurance, but it's still unclear what happens to their pensions.
Senators are eligible for retirement benefits after six years in the upper chamber.
Claude Carignan, the government leader in the Senate, said the government is looking at whether it can legally keep the three senators from collecting.
"The intention of the motion, the spirit and the letter, it's to suspend without pay, without any benefits. It includes all benefits. Including pension plan," he said Wednesday.
Carignan said there hasn't been a case like this in more than a century, so the Senate is still working out what he calls technicalities.
But the Liberal leader in the Senate, James Cowan, said it looks to him as if the government is making things up as it goes along.
"I would have thought somebody at some point would have figured out those questions. But it's not my job to do that. It's their motions," Cowan said.