Mr. Speaker, I will be splitting my time with the member from Trinity—Spadina
Mr. Speaker, it is obvious in this House of Commons that we are now facing probably the most undemocratic government of all time. It is bad enough that the Conservatives got elected, but ever since they have been elected they have displayed a level of arrogance that is beyond the pale.
It took over 13 years for the Liberal Party of Canada in power to develop that level of arrogance. It took the Conservatives over 13 days. Since then, we have seen an unprecedented level of attack on Canadians and the Canadian system in the history of our country.
It starts with the Conservative government reversing itself when it comes to closure. I remember a time when the Conservative Party of Canada, the Reform Party and the Alliance Party went nuts over the Liberal government every time it invoked closure. Every time that happened they stood up and screamed and yelled. Now they turn around and do it themselves. In fact, they do it in such a way that is really quite sad because the bill they brought forward has no accounting mechanism whatsoever.
We in the opposition have asked quite clearly what the cost of that initiative will be but the government has refused to give it. Why would a government, so hell bent on passing legislation that it has to rush it down the throats of parliamentarians, in this case with their coalition partners, the Bloc Québécois, not tell the House of Commons or the Canadian taxpayer how much it will cost?
Let us go through the past couple of months of the Conservative government.
The Minister of Citizenship, Immigration and Multiculturalism attacked the judiciary. Just recently, the member for Renfrew—Nipissing—Pembroke attacked the good people of Newfoundland and Labrador by saying that they should be responsible for their own safety when it comes to the waters off the east coast. The Conservatives have attacked public servants and one of the finest people in the nuclear industry, Ms. Keen. In fact, every time people disagree with the government, they get attacked, and viciously I might add. The list goes on and on.
The Conservatives have given us record deficits, a record debt and yet they continue on without any accounting methods whatsoever. They are just basically saying to heck with the rest of us. They tell us what they will do and then say that we can bring them down if we want. Well that day may come very soon.
I think Canadians are tired of the level of arrogance that the Conservative government has displayed. In my 13 and a half years I have yet to see this level of disgust by a party over there, especially when it is the governing party.
The ironic thing is that we have men and women serving overseas in many countries bringing forward peace, freedom and democracy to many other people who have never had democracy and yet the Conservatives step on democracy because they do not even like it.
I remember very clearly that every time closure was brought in by the Liberals, the Conservatives yelled and screamed. Now they turn around and do it themselves. They attack the judiciary, public servants and disagree with people they hire. When the veterans ombudsman, Colonel Pat Stogran, issued a scathing report over the Department of Veterans Affairs they attacked him. The government did not attack the message, but the messenger because the truth hurts.
The reality is that the government's time is on a very short leash. I, for one, hope the Canadian people in this country rise up to say that this is enough. The good people of Egypt rose up against Mubarak and many of them died to get democracy in Egypt. I would hope that they are not looking at our democracy right now.
What the heck is going on? The government does not even respect the fact that there is an opposition, which is something the Conservatives wanted when they were in opposition. In fact, several pieces of legislation have passed the majority of the House of Commons only to go to an unelected, unaccountable Senate to die.
Bill C-311 was a classic example of how the Conservative Party of Canada trampled on the democratic rights of the majority of the House of Commons. The majority of the House clearly voted for Bill C-311. In fact, the Prime Minister himself said that when the majority of the House democratically votes on a legislation or motion, then the government is honour bound to honour that bill or motion. Those were his own words.
However, when the House did that on several occasions, it went to the unelected, unaccountable Senate, which, by the way, the Conservatives said they would never do. They stood here in the House and screamed and yelled against the Liberal-appointed senators holding up legislation.
When we look at the facts, at least the Liberals were honest about their view of the Senate. They liked it just the way it was. The Conservatives screamed and yelled about that. The minute they put enough their cronies and bag people in there, they started changing the rules.
Without even having a witness and without even having one word of debate, the Conservative senators killed Bill C-311 without even any discussion.
The Senate is supposed to do two things and two things only: peer review legislation that comes from the House of Commons and work on in-depth reports facing the issues of the day. It is not supposed to fundraise. It is not supposed to send ten percenters out, slamming members of Parliament in the House of Commons. Its members are not supposed to be flying across the country in business class on the taxpayers' dime raising funds for the Conservative Party. That is not what the Senate is about.
Yet, when the Senate was asked to actually do its job, it did not even do that. It killed legislation before it even discussed it. Why? It is because we have a female senator of the Conservative persuasion who says, “Why would we vote for anything that wasn't in the throne speech---