Mr. Speaker, I am pleased to speak to this bill which would replace the current citizenship act with a new act. I listened to the minister and she said a lot of nice things. If the bill delivered on some of the things she said, I would support it, but in fact it does not.
I am going to point out in my presentation some of the shortfalls of the bill that make it a piece of legislation which I and the Canadian Alliance cannot support. It is very unfortunate because citizenship is a very touching issue. New Canadians feel pride in obtaining Canadian citizenship. Certainly members of parliament who have attended citizenship ceremonies share that sense of pride new citizens feel when they obtain citizenship.
As a member of parliament I feel pride in being a Canadian citizen. I was fortunate enough to have been born as a Canadian citizen and did not have to come to our country and go through the process to obtain citizenship. It is a very positive issue and it would be very difficult to place a value on it. It is just too important.
Unfortunately the bill does not deal with obtaining citizenship and retaining citizenship in a satisfactory way. I am going to talk later about one particular area which has caused some very serious problems in committee and in the House. Many witnesses pointed to the revocation of citizenship as being an extremely important issue. The government refused to support amendments to the bill and in the first place refused to put in the bill that the ultimate responsibility for revoking citizenship would go to the courts with leave to appeal to the supreme court if necessary.