Mr. Speaker, I welcome my friend to the debate around this bill. It is very important, of course, and we have all recognized that its passage is likely one of the last bills, if not the last bill, passed out of Parliament.
We were just discussing with some of the committee members on the privacy and ethics committee that they have completed a large study that supplemented the study that the democratic institutions minister herself asked for from our Canadian spy agency, about the threats to our elections. The minister knows this but for Canadians watching, the parties all collect an enormous amount of information about individual Canadians: voting preference, gender, income and all sorts of things to best understand the voter. Parties pursue voters to try to get them to vote a certain way and we can understand why parties want to do that. That is the name of the game. The member's party, after the last election, congratulated itself about how good it was at collecting that data.
Here is the problem. That data is not falling under any restrictions or laws in terms of its protection from foreign actors or from individuals trying to hack that data, as was done with the Democrats and probably the Republicans and as was done in the Brexit scenario with Cambridge Analytica and all the rest.
This bill would do nothing to protect that privacy of Canadians or protect our democracy from that foreign influence from bad actors, domestically or internationally. Is that protection not something we should put in, if we have the research and the study and information available that there is a real and present threat to our democracy? Why do a democracy bill and omit that important piece, if not for partisan interests?