Mr. Speaker, let me say how nice it is to see you back in the seat in which I have become accustomed to seeing you.
I would like to congratulate the member for Toronto—Danforth on his speech, on his re-election, and on the modest gains he achieved for his party. I am glad those gains did not reach Nova Scotia and specifically Dartmouth—Cole Harbour, in spite of his many visits and best efforts, and the efforts of a very strong New Democratic Party candidate who did serve in the House before.
The member spoke of the achievements of Bill C-48 in last year's budget where the Liberal government and the New Democrats reached agreement on investing in some important priority areas, one of those areas being post-secondary education, specifically the issue of access for Canadians.
In the last seven or eight years we have made huge strides in investing in university infrastructure through research, development and innovation. The challenge now, I would suggest and I would agree with most members of his party, is student access.
Bill C-48 was an important piece of legislation. Unfortunately, when we came forward to implement that $1.5 billion, in fact it was more than $2 billion, for those Canadians who most needed assistance: aboriginal Canadians, low income Canadians, persons with disabilities, the hon. member chose to go to an election.
My colleague speaks of inaction. That was action. I say very sincerely, that was an unparalleled historical investment in students, but forces were joined to have an election. That was his choice. I am not here to debate the past, but we had an opportunity to achieve results.
Now we have a government that believes students can tax cut their way to an education at university, at community college, and maybe through apprenticeship training.
Following yesterday's pamphlet from the throne, which was pretty thin on education, how confident is my hon. colleague that the government will actually improve access, will actually make life better for Canadian students, particularly those in the margins who need assistance and who would have received help through our legislation last year?