Madam Speaker, what a pleasure it is to be back in the House for regular sittings. It is the first time since, I believe, March 12, so I am glad to be back here speaking on behalf of my constituents in central Alberta and the riding of Red Deer—Lacombe.
I want to thank my colleague who just spoke for the excellent work he is doing in holding the Liberal government to account. He has a very busy job as the ethics critic for the Liberal government, which means he is the busiest man in Canada. I want to thank him very much for the fine work he is doing. I know my colleagues will join me in showing him some appreciation.
My constituents are very frustrated on a number of fronts. They are frustrated with the Liberal government's policy on energy. My riding is much like that of Sarnia, Ontario. There is a large petrochemical installation in my riding. It was one of the last holdouts of good paying jobs in central Alberta, which is now under attack by the Liberal government. Those jobs now seem to be in jeopardy.
More important, my constituents are frustrated with the amount of unaccountable spending by the government. Billions of dollars have been rushed out the door. I cannot remember the last time the House sat and passed an actual budget.
These are unprecedented times. We all know, going back in the history books to 1995 and the previous Liberal government of Jean Chrétien, that when money is being spent in a big rush under the guise of an urgent matter, such as the sponsorship scandal then, the Liberals cannot not help themselves when it came to lining their own pockets. The amount of money back then pales in comparison to the amount of money being spent today.
One only has to look at the reason for this motion today to have an anti-corruption committee because of the amount of money that has gone out, with virtually no accountability. First, we needed to shut down the House because of the pandemic. Now the Liberals are keeping Canadians and Parliamentarians in the dark, not because it suits the health care interests of the country but because it suits their design of holding onto power desperately, so desperately, in fact, that they are willing to cause an election that nobody actually wants. They are willing to throw down that gauntlet, force an election on the Canadian public during a pandemic just to cover up the fact that they do not want to talk anymore or have anymore information uncovered about this WE scandal.
Why is this important? It is important on a number of fronts. One is that we need to have trust and confidence in our institutions. The primary institution that Canadians need to have trust in is Parliament. If parliamentarians are not able to do their jobs, if we are not able to get the information we need at committee, if we are not able to have the correct information to make decisions and recommendations, then we are not able to do our jobs. We need that confidence and ability to get that information.
What have we seen so far? My colleague who just spoke said that we were in the third wave of Liberal corruption. I would suggest that we are in a wave pool. The waves just keep coming. The first one was cash for access, which was a very big deal. If people wanted to have influence with the government, all they had to do was go to a fundraiser. If it was a foreign government, all it had to do was to put a whole bunch of money into a foundation that happened to share the same last name as the Prime Minister and it could get what it wanted, so much so that the government had to change the rules. Because the Prime Minister was unable to follow his own rules, we had to change them so political entities could continue to do their business without the issue of cash for access or the perception of being able to buy one's way into the Liberal government's inner circle.
That was one of the first major issues the government had.
Then we had the trip to billionaire island, friends of the family. I remember that very well as the former chair of the ethics committee at the time. It was epic.
Four times, under four different counts, the Prime Minister is the very first prime minister in Canadian history to be charged under ethics laws.