Mr. Speaker, I should inform you that I will use only half of my allotted time, that is ten minutes, because I will be sharing it with my colleague from Rivière-du-Nord, who will no doubt enrich this debate.
That said, the question we are asking ourselves today, to which the public deserves an answer, is this: For what fundamental reason does Parliament want to withdraw confidence from the government opposite?
I was not planning to open my speech with that, but we were just provided with a perfect illustration of how completely morally bankrupt this government is. Let me explain.
This is a point that the hon. member wanted to address. Last night, the government showed up in this chamber. After years of work, demanding on behalf of seniors that they receive the GIS, denouncing the complicated forms issued by the government, which was purposely depriving dozens and dozens of our most vulnerable seniors of this supplement, my colleague from Saint-Maurice—Champlain introduced a bill. This is a goal he pursued throughout his career. This bill was asking that government show some humanity. It was asking that it stop squandering money right and left and making countless announcements of all sorts, as we are used to it doing at the beginning of every election campaign, and instead, that it take the time to render justice to the most disadvantaged in our society: seniors who need the guaranteed income supplement.
The bill on which the House worked was adopted at second reading. While all hon. members of this House were in favour of this bill, we have seen how uncomfortable that made the government, which has for years been denying retroactive payments to those seniors deprived of money they were owed.
Why was the government uncomfortable? Because it will have to face the people very soon, as Parliament will by all accounts be passing a vote of non-confidence. The members of the government therefore realized that they will have to meet with senior citizens and admit that they opposed this bill whose purpose was to treat seniors fairly. A wave of panic swept over the other side.
People are entitled to know these things. When all parties supported the bill put forward by my colleague from Saint-Maurice—Champlain to ensure full retroactivity for senior citizens, the Liberals opposite had no idea what to do. The word then went around that they were going to stand up and vote in favour of the bill, as if they truly agreed with it.
This would allow them to go into an election campaign and tell all the senior citizens that they were in agreement and had voted in favour of the bill. That is what they tried to say yesterday. However, they thought that it was not going to go any farther because it was only second reading and Parliament was going to be dissolved. The Liberals’ reputation would be left intact. They would be able to convince senior citizens that they were going to agree to the Bloc’s demands.
We tricked them. We know that Parliament can do anything here. It is a matter of being on the same page and deciding unanimously to work on a bill. There was unanimous consent for Bills C-53, C-54, C-55 and C-66, and for the ways and means motion and there will undoubtedly be other bills that merit unanimous consent between now and the end of the session. When we want to, we can do anything.
I stood up and said there was unanimous consent. The Bloc has been demanding justice for senior citizens for a long time now so it is clear the Bloc agrees. The Conservatives and the New Democratic Party agreed as well, and—miracle of miracles—because they wanted to save face, the Liberals gave their support. People are entitled to know these things. Since there was unanimity, the Bloc therefore sought the unanimous consent of the House to vote at third reading on the bill put forward by my colleague from Saint-Maurice—Champlain and finally be fair to senior citizens, the most disadvantaged segment of our society.
No one on the other side stood up to talk about royal assent. There was panic, and the Liberal MPs cried no because they were suddenly being forced to assume their responsibilities and see through what they had undertaken to do on second reading. They were exposed.
I call that a government with no morals. This is what people can no longer abide in Liberals from Quebec and the rest of Canada. People are fed up hearing a message that does not reflect careful thought and concrete action. The government says one thing but thinks the opposite. I call that hypocritical, and this government has shattered the record for hypocrisy.
Take the Gomery report. I will give another example of thus unmatched level of hypocrisy. The government said it created this sweeping Gomery inquiry and that when the report was tabled the sponsorship issue would be considered resolved. The government says it highlighted two consequences of the Gomery report: first, the judge cleared the Prime Minister of any wrongdoing, and second, the Liberal Party cleaned house. Let us see what the real implications are.
After numerous questions have been asked in this House, the government keeps repeating that Judge Gomery stated that the former Minister of Finance, the current Prime Minister, did not have the ability to monitor the government's expenditures day after day. It is true that he wrote that. Let us stop there, however. They say that he cleared the Prime Minister of any wrongdoing, but they forget to mention that Judge Gomery also wrote, a few pages further on, that Treasury Board had abdicated its responsibilities, that it was as if it longer existed, that it had not applied the rules nor kept track of the money as it should have done.
It must be remembered that the current Prime Minister was at that time the vice-president of the Treasury Board. The members on the other side avoid mentioning that. They have two different stories. The Liberals always leave in what is to their advantage and leave aside half or three quarters of the truth when it does not suit them. That is why people want no more of this government.
They say the Liberal Party has cleaned house. The Prime Minister has indeed announced the suspension for life of 10 people. How splendid. We are talking about 10 bad Liberals who received dirty money. They suspended the one who collected the money, and we approve of this decision. They suspended the one who carried the money, and we also approve of this decision. They did not, however, suspend those who received the money and who got elected with the help of the dirty money that certain people slipped into their pockets. They are still good Liberals.
That is the reason people want no more of this government. They can no longer stand having a government devoid of any sense of morality, a government that tells only a small fraction of the truth, a government that always finds a turn of phrase to get itself off the hook, whereas the reality is quite a different story. That is what we call a government devoid of morality, a government that we want no more of.
Let us indulge in some political fiction and imagine that I have the good fortune to work for an advertising agency that gives advice to the Liberal Party for the next election. There is not the slightest possibility that this will ever happen because, as we know, the Liberals only hire their friends. Nonetheless, if that were the case, I would not keep the slogan proposed by the member for Honoré-Mercier, the president of the Quebec wing of the Liberal Party of Canada. His slogan is not polite: “Hold your nose and vote Liberal.” I do not think it does them justice. In any event, if I worked in the communications field, I would avoid this slogan and propose one on a fine red background: “Vote Liberal—or With the Liberal Party—your money at our service”. That is the slogan of the Liberal Party: our money at its service. And we want no more of it.