I am now prepared to rule on a point of order raised on March 10 by the right hon. member for Calgary Centre concerning the transcription in Hansard of remarks by the hon. government House leader on March 9, 2004.
The right hon. member for Calgary Centre alleges that Hansard does not accurately reflect the words of the hon. government House leader where, at page 1259 in the French version, it states:
Je regrette que cette obligation n'ait pas été remplie, [...]
He contends that the phrase “à cause d’une erreur administrative” has been excised from the minister’s remarks. The hon. government House leader states that the Hansard entry is accurate.
I have looked into the situation and it appears that there has indeed been an error, though not the error that might originally have been suspected. I have obtained from Hansard records a copy of the document containing the draft notes of the government House leader. As members will know, it is common practice to make such notes available to our interpreters and later to the Hansard editors to assist them in their work.
A perusal of the minister's draft notes shows clearly that the phrase “à cause d'une erreur administrative” was indeed in the original text, but these words were crossed out, one assumes by the minister, and were not ultimately spoken by him when he rose in the chamber. However, it would appear that the simultaneous interpretation, relying on the draft text that had been provided, and not on the words spoken, erroneously included that phrase when translating the minister's remarks into English.
I am satisfied that this explains the discrepancy that concerns the right hon. member for Calgary Centre and that Hansard is a faithful reflection of what was said in the House. I thank him for his vigilance with regard to the accuracy of House Debates and I thank the hon. minister for his contribution in clarifying this matter.