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Liberals support push to have public inquiry probe claims that parliamentarians helped foreign states

Public Safety Minister Dominic LeBlanc says the federal government will support calls to have the public inquiry probing foreign election interference take on shocking new claims that some parliamentarians have «wittingly» conspired with foreign governments.

But the minister suggested commissioner Marie-Josée Hogue would be legally prevented from revealing names.

Last week, the National Security and Intelligence Committee of Parliamentarians (NSICOP), a cross-party committee of MPs and senators with top security clearances, released a heavily redacted document alleging some parliamentarians have actively helped foreign governments like China and India meddle in Canadian politics.

The bombshell accusations have rattled the House of Commons and touched off a fiery debate about whether, and how, the names of the accused parliamentarians should be released.

LeBlanc said the Liberals will support a Bloc Québécois motion that calls for expanding the Hogue commission's mandate to allow it to investigate MPs and senators when it comes up for a vote.

During question period Monday, LeBlanc said Privy Council officials are already in contact with Hogue's team to discuss the best way forward. The minister said the commission would have access to the same documents NSICOP members saw.

LeBlanc remained firm, however, in the face of calls to release the names of MPs and other parliamentarians cited in the report.

«We think that's a responsible way to proceed, not simply standing up and illegally announcing a list of names like my colleague suggests,» he said during question period.

«I asked the Deputy Commissioner of the RCMP Mark Flynn this morning what would happen if I announced the list of names like my colleagues are asking me to do, and

Read more on cbc.ca