Mr. Speaker, I am a member of the Standing Joint Committee on the Scrutiny of Regulations and have been a member of that committee since 1989 without pause.
I came here this morning thinking that we would be discussing Bill C-28. I want to make a couple of comments and then ask the member a question, because I know the member is also a member of the committee along with me and with others.
Everything he says is what the joint committee said in its report to the House of Commons. The joint committee made these comments unanimously, as far as I recall, both from representatives of all parties on that committee and senators representing both parties in the other place. That report draws to the attention of the House exactly what the hon. member brought to the attention of the House in his speech.
My problem is very similar to what the parliamentary secretary just said. This is an important topic because it deals with the primacy of parliament. It deals with the ability of parliament, when called upon to do so, to disallow regulations that have been put forward by various departments.
Because this is a power the committee very rarely recommends that parliament exercise, it is important that all members are apprised of upcoming debate so that they can prepare and consider the issue carefully.
In view of a unanimous report of a joint committee, it is important that members of Parliament take their positions advisedly after having read the report carefully, after having considered all points of view, whatever they may be.
What troubles me is that the joint committee has already agreed that we would wait until next Thursday before taking any further action, in the hope that the solicitor general's department would deal with the regulations prior to April 4. It is already on the agenda for April 4, at which time our committee would make a final decision as to whether or not to recommend disallowance.
My question for the hon. member is simple. Why would he bring this matter forth now as opposed to waiting until after the committee had dealt with it on April 4, the last day the committee was prepared to permit the solicitor general to delay?