Mr. Speaker, I have two minutes. I will be continuing after question period, after a delay of about an hour, which is better than a situation I once had where I started a speech and then was delayed by a two-week break. There is nothing like having two weeks between the first two minutes and the remaining eight minutes of a speech to allow one to refine those remarks. The second half of the speech was considerably better than the first.
This time I am going to turn it around, and I am going to put all the exciting stuff at the front end. I am going to talk about the legislative history of this bill, a bill that is so urgently important that the government is applying time allocation and limiting debate. It is a matter that is absolutely critical to get dealt with, which is presumably why the government has delayed debate from when it introduced the bill in December 2021. It did not start debate for a further six months, until June 16 of this year, just shy of six months after it was introduced. No, in fact it is exactly six months. Maybe the government is seeking symmetry here, but that is when debate at second reading started. Of course we cannot complete anything that fast. It then disappeared. It is now back in October, and the government is announcing that it is a crisis and we must deal with this immediately, after having delayed it.
However, the story is actually worse than that because the original bill was introduced in the Senate as Bill S-3, and the government then put its own bill in. Even that misses the point that there was a previous bill, which was essentially identical, introduced before the last election, the mid-COVID pandemic election, which caused everything on the Order Paper to be set aside. It was an election which served, as far as I can tell, literally no purpose. It was the least important election in Canadian history, and simply replicated the previous mandate down almost to the exact seat.
Now it is a panic. Before we had literally years to deal with it, and I should point out that this is dealing with an issue that is essentially 50 years old. However, I will stop now and I look forward to continuing after question period.