Mr. Speaker, I appreciate the comments from my friend from Lanark—Frontenac—Lennox and Addington.
If we were to go back to the Camp report, we would find the basis upon which the two principles that were applied to the Liberal legislation were there. That is the first one was with respect to using the last election as the basis upon which to document the public contributions because it is an objective basis. It is a basis of what the support was in an election, a democratic contest in which people have expressed themselves. That is just the reality. Would there be another way of doing it? Yes, I suppose there would be but that is one objective criterion.
If we look at other countries in terms of how public funding is allocated, it is the same principle applied, which is that the level of public funding depends upon the level achieved in a democratic process. The same is true with respect to the contributions. None of these things are fixed for all time.
If the member opposite is saying that the government would like to look at those contributions and at the legislation overall, I would invite the government, instead of bringing in these little amendments here and there, which are designed to appeal to one party on the other side or not and give a temporary advantage, to put the subject matter of election financing in front of an all party committee and let us have an agreement that we will not see this as a partisan issue.
I really do not see this as a partisan issue nor do I see it as a personal issue. I have done my bit and I have no personal issues. I am not here out of any personal gripe. I am here because I think what has animated the government is a desire for temporary political advantage.
I do not know whether that has animated other governments in the past or not. I only know what I see and I think that is a very unhealthy feature. It is a perfect example of how not to reform the election financing process. The election financing process should be something in which all political parties can be seen to be participating and there is no particular advantage to one party or another. That is an approach that I would strongly advocate for now and certainly advocate for the future.