Mr. Speaker, once again, what I was saying was that it is not up to the government of the day to decide how it will be held accountable for its governing. When it comes to fiscal responsibility and accountability, the Prime Minister and the finance minister seem equally disinterested. They have refused to deliver a budget or even a fiscal update, or proper accounting for that matter, for their COVID-19 relief measures, and today's motion still offers no timeline on a fiscal update.
As we consider this proposal, we have to acknowledge the shortfalls of virtual meetings. While meting virtually is always preferred to not meeting at all, virtual meetings are not conducive to quality work. As a member of HUMA, I have experienced the shortfalls of technology first-hand. Our committee has been meeting virtually for the past month. Even a month in, the time spent on technological issues far outweighs the time spent on the meeting itself. These technological problems significantly hinder our effectiveness, and we have seen similar issues in the COVID-19 committee.
In-person meetings of the House would deliver better results for Canadians. There are those who would stand in this place and argue that in the name of health and safety this is not possible. To them, I would say that this very meeting shows that we can be in this chamber while maintaining public health guidelines. I would also like to point to examples of democracies around the world that have continued or resumed parliamentary activities. Just as the chamber should proceed with regular business, so should all of our standing and special committees. These committees should be getting back to their important work. It is in the long-term interest of Canadians.
A Parliament operating with its full authority can only better serve Canadians. This is not a partisan issue. This is a fundamental belief that Parliament is the bedrock of our democracy and that debate, oversight and transparency strengthen our democracy. Generations before us have shaped our democracy. They have safeguarded and improved it. It is our collective responsibility to do the same for the next generation. To do that, we must remain vigilant against intentional and unintentional efforts to erode or undermine our democracy. Safeguarding our democracy should be the priority of all of us.
We have to acknowledge that this motion would strip Parliament of some of its power. While governing in a minority setting may not be the Prime Minister's preference, it is what Canadians chose and he has the obligation to work with Parliament for the good of Canadians. Canadians expect more, and Canadians deserve more.
I would urge all members of this chamber to recognize Parliament as an essential service and to acknowledge that their responsibility to their constituents is crucial and their duty to uphold our democracy is paramount. A government without accountability fails our democracy and it fails Canadians. We must be focused on getting the best results for Canadians because they are counting on us. While we face a global health crisis, we cannot sacrifice the health of our democracy.