Mr. Speaker, one of the problems I have with this government is that it will not make decisions until it is absolutely necessary.
We remember the last minute intervention of the Prime Minister during the Quebec referendum. Only when it looked like the referendum was all but lost did the government take any real action. Then the government promised to replace the Sea King helicopters. The Prime Minister's handling of the issue cost taxpayers $500 million and today we are still without replacements. During the Iraqi crisis, the Prime Minister waited until the eleventh hour to make any decision, then, aided by hateful comments from his caucus, he alienated our neighbours to the south.
Now there is softwood lumber. It has devastated my riding and home province of British Columbia. The government knew that this agreement was expiring. For five years it did nothing to ensure its continuance in favour of our Canadian industry.
Sadly, the Minister for International Trade cannot tell us what the plan is so that this kind of situation does not occur every five years, putting the softwood lumber industry in peril. My constituents and Canadians alike deserve and expect better.