Bloc Québécois MP Sebastien Lemire rises during question period in the House of Commons on Parliament Hill in Ottawa on Friday, March 12, 2021. A Bloc Québécois MP has apologized for taking a screen shot of a Liberal MP who inadvertently appeared nude during virtual proceedings in the House of Commons last week. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick

Bloc Québécois MP Sebastien Lemire rises during question period in the House of Commons on Parliament Hill in Ottawa on Friday, March 12, 2021. A Bloc Québécois MP has apologized for taking a screen shot of a Liberal MP who inadvertently appeared nude during virtual proceedings in the House of Commons last week. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick

Bloc Québécois MP apologizes for taking nude photo of Liberal MP William Amos

Liberal whip Mark Holland said the apology, while welcome, doesn’t resolve the issue

A Bloc Québécois MP apologized Wednesday for taking a screenshot of a Liberal colleague who inadvertently appeared nude during virtual proceedings in the House of Commons last week.

Bloc MP Sebastien Lemire rose on a point of order to apologize for breaching parliamentary rules, which prohibit taking photos or video of proceedings.

He did not specifically name the MP involved — Liberal William Amos, a fellow Quebecer who represents the Pontiac riding.

“Today I would like to apologize to the House for breaking the rules by taking a photograph of a colleague during question period on April 14,” Lemire said in French.

Lemire said he’s already apologized personally to Amos but added: “I nevertheless want to reiterate it publicly, to him personally, to his family, to colleagues and to anyone I may have offended.”

“I have no idea how that photo made its way into the media,” he added.

Amos declined to comment on Lemire’s apology.

But Liberal whip Mark Holland said the apology, while welcome, doesn’t resolve the issue. He said the Bloc is so far refusing to reveal with whom Lemire shared the screenshot, frustrating attempts to find out who leaked it publicly.

“It’s essential we know where Mr. Lemire sent this photo,” Holland said in an interview. “We do not accept that he is not going to say where he sent this.”

Passing it along to the media “was potentially a criminal action” and “a horrible violation of not only the member’s privilege as it relates to the rules and bylaws of the House, but a horrible violation of human dignity,” Holland added.

“This is an image that has been shared around the world, has become a joke, a punchline in late-night talk shows in other countries.”

Lemire and the Bloc declined further comment Wednesday.

The government has asked House of Commons Speaker Anthony Rota to investigate the matter. Asked if Liberals have also asked for a police investigation, Holland said “we’re now reviewing all of our options.”

Rota thanked Lemire for his apology Wednesday. He said he’ll come back to the House later with his findings.

Amos has said he didn’t realize his camera was on when he was changing his clothes after a jog.

The image of a naked Amos was beamed to MPs tuned in to the internal parliamentary feed for that day’s question period, but it could not be seen on the public feed since Amos was not addressing the Commons at the time.

Government House leader Pablo Rodriguez called for the investigation last week, describing the incident as “mean-spirited” and “life-changing” for Amos.

In an interview with The Canadian Press last week, Amos said the incident sends a “terrible signal” about the corrosive nature of politics in Canada and to young people about the propriety of sharing of embarrassing, intimate photos that last forever on the internet.

New Democrat MP Leah Gazan tweeted her disapproval of Lemire’s actions.

“No words. Such a disrespectful and cruel action.”

Holland said there was an “incredibly short” period of time between when the photo was taken and when it was publicly disseminated, suggesting only a few people would have been in a position to share it with the media.

Joan Bryden, The Canadian Press

Parliament

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Winnie Peters, centre, spoke about the loss of two husbands over the years, both of who were murdered. The Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls event in Hope on May 5, 2021 included prayers for men who have been killed as well. (Jessica Peters/ Hope Standard)
Red dresses hang in Hope’s Memorial Park in remembrance

Group gathers for National Day of Awareness of Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls

Motorists breaking travel rules can be fined $230 for failing to follow instructions or $575 if the reason for travel violates the essential travel health order, at this Highway 3 check area near Manning Park. Photo RCMP
RCMP begin checking drivers on BC highways

Four check points are set up Thursday May 6 around the province

UBC Sports Hall of Famer Carrie (Watson) Watts (far right, front row) helped lead the UBC Thunderbirds to the 2004 national championship, their first since 1974. She served as assistant coach a few years after graduation. (Photo/UBC)
Agassiz-born basketball star inducted into UBC Sports Hall of Fame

Carrie (Watson) Watts helped lead the team to their first championship in decades

The Aquilini Investment Group has agreed to a proposed contract of five years to run the Abbotsford Centre. (File photo)
Proposal to run Abbotsford Centre offered to Canucks ownership group

Planned five-year contract to cost city $750K annually, starting Jan. 1, 2022

JANGO the police dog helped track down a suspect on Luckakuck Way in Chilliwack. (RCMP photo)
Alleged thief in Chilliwack can’t fool the nose of JANGO the police dog

An Edmonton man who allegedly broke into a storage container on Luckakuck Way was arrested

Protesters attempt to stop clear-cutting of old-growth trees in Fairy Creek near Port Renfrew. (Will O’Connell photo)
VIDEO: Workers, activists clash at site of Vancouver Island logging operation

Forest license holders asking for independent investigation into incident

A worker rides a bike at a B.C. Hydro substation in Vancouver, on Friday, April 16, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
BC Hydro report raises safety concerns as pandemic prompts jump in yard work

Incidents involving weekend tree trimmers, gardeners and landscapers have risen 30% since the pandemic hit

Surrey RCMP is investigating after a serious three-vehicle crash at the intersection of King George Boulevard and 128th Street Thursday afternoon (May 6, 2021). (Photo: Shane MacKichan)
VIDEO: Serious crash in Surrey sends 1 to hospital

Surrey RCMP say one of the drivers fled on foot, but was later found at an area hospital

Starting Tuesday, May 11, B.C. adults born in 1981 and earlier will be able to register for a vaccine dose. (Haley Ritchie/Black Press Media)
BC adults 40+ eligible to book COVID-19 vaccinations next week

Starting Tuesday, people born in 1981 and earlier will be able to schedule their inoculation against the virus

John Paul Fraser, executive director of the BC Salmon Farmers Association. (Screen shot)
Salmon farmers warn Surrey jobs on line as feds end Discovery Islands operations

344 full-time jobs at risk in Surrey and 1,189 B.C.-wide

Parks Canada and Tla-o-qui-aht Tribal Parks dig the washed up Princess M out from sand along the south shore of the Pacific Rim National Park Reserve. (Nora O’Malley photo)
Rescue attempt costs man his boat off Pacific Rim National Park Reserve

Coast Guard response questioned after volunteer responder’s speedboat capsizes in heavy swells

Al Kowalko shows off the province’s first electric school bus, running kids to three elementary and two secondary schools on the West Shore. (Zoe Ducklow/News Staff)
B.C.’s first electric school bus making the rounds in Victoria suburbs

No emissions, no fuel costs and less maintenance will offset the $750K upfront expense

Road sign on Highway 1 west of Hope warns drivers of COVID-19 essential travel road checks on the highways into the B.C. Interior. (Jessica Peters/Chilliwack Progress)
B.C. residents want travel checks at Alberta border, MLA says

Police road checks in place at highways out of Vancouver area

Victoria police say the photo they circulated of an alleged cat thief was actually a woman taking her own cat to the vet. (Black Press Media File Photo)
Photo of suspected cat thief released by Victoria police actually just woman with her pet

Police learned the she didn’t steal Penelope the cat, and was actually taking her cat to the vet

Most Read