Mr. Speaker, I will try to answer that question. In our caucus we analyze every bill that comes before us. One question we ask is how it will affect the family. It is not the only question we ask. We also ask how it will affect the economy and how will it affect the environment. We ask a series of questions as we do our analyses.
One of the questions we feel is proper to ask is how it affects the family. Does it somehow strengthen the family? A family is anyone related by blood, marriage or adoption. We are not trying to have a restrictive definition of a family, but we are saying that there is a role in government to enhance families.
When we analyze the bill we do not see how it is strengthening families. We have not been able to analyze how it will do that. As I said earlier it is worthy of broad debate, which I think should have preceded the bill, on what is the public policy interest in the bill or in any other social service bill and whether we can demonstrate that it will be of benefit to society.
As the member for Lakeland already mentioned, there is a demonstrable benefit to giving parents the maximum freedom to raise their children in the way they see fit. For example, why are single income families making $60,000 a year penalized under the current tax system, discriminated against and told that if they put their children in registered day care they will get a tax break? However, if they choose to use Aunt Bessy or grandma or someone to look after their kids, they do not get any help. There is no tax benefit for them because they have made a choice. The taxman tells them whether or not they will get a benefit. It is not up to them to look after their kids the way they want. If they are put in registered day care they are given a tax break, but if they are looked after within the family unit they do not get any help. What kind of a law is that?
Surely parents have the best interest of their children in mind. They base their decision on many circumstances. Their desire to go to work, their necessity to go to work, the closeness of their family, the closeness of day care services, and all kinds of other factors are taken into account. Based on those factors they decide to raise their kids whatever way they choose. They may choose to look after them at home.
However, under the Liberal regime the taxman says that it is not up to families to make that decision. It is up to the taxman to make that decision, who makes it impossible for them to look after their kids in that way unless they choose the way they are told to raise their families. That is wrong. That is why the Canadian Alliance says it should be up to individuals and families to make the decision, not up to the revenue minister.