Mr. Speaker, I have a couple of comments and a question with respect to what the member said, speaking on behalf of the New Democratic caucus. I have the impression, when I hear her arguments, that she is asking the government to stop picking on the dangerous and high risk offenders. I do not understand that.
If we listen to what the member said, she gave four or five of what appeared to be reasonable arguments, and that seemed to be the thesis of what she was trying to present. I will not comment on all of them, but I will comment on the reverse onus clause, which she suggests is unconstitutional.
She is right. When people are charged, the long-time principle in our court systems, going back to the English system and in fact most systems around this world, they are innocent until proven guilty. This is not about that. This is about sentencing. We are talking about dangerous and high risk offenders, bad people, people who have done bad things three times. It is all about that. This legislation is saying if that happens then the onus is on them. There is a certain discretion to the prosecutor to bring this forward and there is also a discretion on the court system as to whether it will deem that person a dangerous offender.
The member seems to be giving the impression that when a person is charged, it is a reverse onus clause. That is not fair because the bill does not say that.
Could the member comment on that and perhaps rethink her position on this one position?