Mr. Speaker, I would like to thank all of my colleagues in the House of Commons for their support for this bill. The support is across the aisle and throughout the chamber, and one that I very much appreciate.
As a cabinet minister for about 10 years, I was not able to introduce private member's bills. Even though I have been here for close to 22 years, this is the first bill that I have had pass. Even when I was not in cabinet, back in the eighties, one had to have unanimous consent of the House of Commons to proceed with a private member's bill. My private member's bill was to have a national holiday for Sir John A. Macdonald at around this time of year, and I could not get unanimous consent on that. Nonetheless, I was proud to have the opportunity.
One of my colleagues around that time, the Hon. Pauline Browes, introduced a private member's bill for a statue of John Diefenbaker. She gave me the honour of seconding that bill. Much to our surprise, to a certain extent it was supported by all members of the chamber, and the statue of John Diefenbaker is outside here. I remember that Prime Minister Mulroney was so pleased and excited, he said, “Make sure you let everybody know and we'll put one up to Lester Pearson as well.” It is appropriate to have the statutes of those two prime ministers.
My colleague from Don Valley West, a member of the Liberal Party, was good enough to support this. He had a look at it and was in favour of it. I very much appreciate that. This is a great example that, on many occasions, this chamber can work together in the best interests of all Canadians.