Thank you, Madam Chair.
Again, thank you to our witnesses today. I think there have been some great insights so far.
I'm going to start with a very brief comment. I know that Mr. Smith mentioned, in the context of the Senate, the kind of institutional knowledge that comes with that. I think that's something we need to bear in mind as we go forward with this study. There are many in the current government, the vast majority, who've never served in opposition. In the same way, there are many in the opposition who have never served in government.
Bearing in mind the context of government versus opposition, it's great to have institutional memory on this panel today with people like Mr. Blaikie, who served in the House for many years. Also, of course, we have Mr. Bosc, who I believe started in 1986 with the House of Commons and literally wrote the book on procedure. It's great to have that context.
Mr. Bosc, I know that many of us in the House have appreciated your wise counsel over the years. Certainly, you are missed around the precinct, so we appreciate you being with us today. I will start with a question for you.
There's been a suggestion that perhaps there should be a standing order change that would be a catch-all, a “Standing Order 1.2” that would give the Speaker the ability to adjust procedures in the House of Commons in the context of an emergency or a pandemic.
I want to get your thoughts on whether it should be done as a single standing order change, which gives a blank cheque, for lack of a better word, or whether it should be articulated as a series of changes that would apply in the context of a pandemic or a national emergency. Could give us your thoughts on that?