Mr. Speaker, as was indicated by the House leader for the official opposition, there are certainly some problems with the method by which the government is attempting to move this legislation forward.
That said, the lesser of the evils here is that many seasonal workers, many Atlantic Canadians and Canadians right across the country who would be the beneficiaries of this legislation, will not be able to avail themselves of the support that would be put in place.
All Canadians know and all members of the House realize that this legislation, were it really a government priority, could have been brought forward in a much more timely fashion.
What was alluded to by my friend is quite true. The government is in the death throes before an election. It is attempting to get this legislation through in a very cynical fashion. It is attempting to hold this in front of the faces of Canadians and tell them that this is fixed, that this is a done deal, just as it has with medicare. That of course is not the case, as we all realize.
What we do not want to do is hold up this legislation. If there is any way procedurally that we can proceed with this legislation to the benefit and greater good of Canadians who would therefore be eligible and able to avail themselves of this support system through the EI changes, we in the Progressive Conservative Party would be prepared to co-operate with the government to see that it happens.
The indication that the other place would also be open to receipt of this legislation to see that it would pass through before the end of the day is welcome news. I do not think any member of the House should throw up roadblocks to try to prevent that from happening.
It is with a very jaded view that the government is doing this. It is obviously doing so as more pre-election goodies, but we do not want to see this legislation held up any further if at all possible. It does circumvent rules. It does not allow us to have sufficient time to look at the content and the true inner mechanisms that would be brought about by this legislation, but it is done with the best of intentions, we hope, and therefore the Progressive Conservative Party would support passage of that legislation.