(a) until Friday, June 23, 2023, a minister of the Crown may, with the agreement of the House leader of another recognized party, rise from his or her seat at any time during a sitting, but no later than 6:30 p.m., and request that the ordinary hour of daily adjournment for a subsequent sitting be 12:00 a.m., provided that it be 10:00 p.m. on a day when a debate pursuant to Standing Order 52 or 53.1 is to take place, and that such a request shall be deemed adopted;
(b) on a sitting day extended pursuant to paragraph (a),
(i) proceedings on any opposition motion pursuant to Standing Order 81(16) shall conclude no later than 5:30 p.m. Tuesday to Thursday, 6:30 p.m. on a Monday or 1:30 p.m. on a Friday, on an allotted day for the business of supply, except pursuant to Standing Order 81(18)(c),
(ii) after 6:30 p.m., the Speaker shall not receive any quorum calls or dilatory motions, and shall only accept a request for unanimous consent after receiving a notice from the House leaders or whips of all recognized parties stating that they are in agreement with such a request,
(iii) motions to proceed to the orders of the day, and to adjourn the debate or the House may be moved after 6:30 p.m. by a minister of the Crown, including on a point of order, and such motions be deemed adopted,
(iv) the time provided for Government Orders shall not be extended pursuant to Standing Orders 33(2), 45(7.1) or 67.1(2);
(c) until Friday, June 23, 2023,
(i) during consideration of the estimates on the last allotted day of each supply period, pursuant to Standing Orders 81(17) and 81(18), when the Speaker interrupts the proceedings for the purpose of putting forthwith all questions necessary to dispose of the estimates,
(A) all remaining motions to concur in the votes for which a notice of opposition was filed shall be deemed to have been moved and seconded, the questions deemed put and recorded divisions deemed requested,
(B) the Speaker shall have the power to combine the said motions for voting purposes, provided that, in exercising this power, the Speaker be guided by the same principles and practices used at report stage,
(ii) a motion for third reading of a government bill may be made in the same sitting during which the said bill has been concurred in at report stage;
(d) on Wednesday, December 14, 2022, Thursday, December 15, 2022, or Friday, December 16, 2022, a minister of the Crown may move, without notice, a motion to adjourn the House until Monday, January 30, 2023, provided that the House shall be adjourned pursuant to Standing Order 28 and that the said motion shall be decided immediately without debate or amendment;
(e) on Wednesday, June 21, 2023, Thursday, June 22, 2023, or Friday, June 23, 2023, a minister of the Crown may move, without notice, a motion to adjourn the House until Monday, September 18, 2023, provided that the House shall be adjourned pursuant to Standing Order 28 and that the said motion shall be decided immediately without debate or amendment; and
(f) notwithstanding the order adopted on Thursday, June 23, 2022, and Standing Order 45(6), no recorded division requested between 2:00 p.m. on Thursday, December 15, 2022 and the adjournment on Friday, December 16, 2022, and between 2:00 p.m. on Thursday, June 22, 2023 and the adjournment on Friday, June 23, 2023, shall be deferred, except for any recorded division requested in regard to a Private Members’ Business item, for which the provisions of the order adopted on Thursday, June 23, 2022, shall continue to apply.
Madam Speaker, it is a pleasure for me to rise to get an opportunity to speak to this motion. I want to start at the outset by thanking my colleagues, the hon. House leaders, for the areas in which we have been able to find co-operation. There have been a number of different areas in which we have been able to work constructively together. The intention of this motion is to be an expansion and not a reduction of that.
I am going to speak very briefly to some of my concerns with respect to the legislative agenda we have and some of the challenges that currently exist with that, and then I am going to speak more broadly to the state of discourse and our engagement with one another in this place politically.
It is my hope that this will provoke more dialogue among the parties to make clear what exactly our respective intentions are in terms of the number of speakers and length of time taken with each bill. It has been a source of frustration to not know how many speakers are going to be put up, specifically by the Conservatives, and that is, frankly, obstruction by stealth. I will give specific examples.
Bill S-5, which this House voted for unanimously, took six days of House time just to get to committee. This is something that was voted on unanimously. More specifically, let us take a look at Bill C-9, which is a very technical bill on judges. That bill, again, was supported unanimously. However, when there were interpretation issues in the House and we asked for an additional 20 minutes so we did not need to spend an entire additional House day dealing with this bill, which was unanimously supported, that was rejected by the Conservatives.
Although most times we have not been told how many speakers there will be, we have been told that the Conservatives want more speakers on this bill. This motion would provide the opportunity to do that. I have heard the hon. House leader for the Conservative Party indicate concern with committees. I share those concerns and want to work with him to make sure committees are in no way impeded and may conduct their business without interruption, so both committees and the House can do their respective work.
I have just a couple of comments, though, because this is an inflection point and we have a choice as to the direction we take right now. If there is upset about sitting later hours, there are solutions. Simply give us the number of speakers and have a frank and honest conversation about how long is reasonable for a bill to take. Let us have that conversation understanding no one party here has a majority, which means no one party should be able to dictate to all the other parties that something does not move forward.
It is totally fair to oppose something. It is totally fair to vote against it. It is totally fair to disagree with it vociferously. However, if a majority of the House wants to move forward, then the fair question is how many voices need to be heard from those who are not in the majority to allow the House to do its business. Giving no answer is not an acceptable response and is not something that can be worked with. Most reasonable people would see that.
This is really a call or a provocation for a conversation. In that conversation, I want to invoke a dear friend, who was the deputy leader of the government in this place. His name was Arnold Chan. I go back to the speech Arnold gave as he was mustering the last of his energy in his last days of life to speak to this chamber about how we need to work with one another.
Arnold was one of my best friends in the world, and watching him die was profoundly painful, but his words always echo in my ears. One of Arnold's chief frustrations was that this chamber, this place that was so important to him, was often reduced to just reading talking points with one another: us saying how wonderful we are and the other side saying how terrible we are, and them saying they are wonderful and us saying they are terrible. Of course, in that back-and-forth, the truth of the situation and the difficulty of what we are going through is lost. In difficult times, we lose the opportunity to genuinely hear each other.
Let us be straight about where we are. These are the most difficult times the planet has faced since World War II. People across the world are scared. They are watching the price of their basic necessities of life rising, be they groceries, rent or any of a myriad things. They are watching a war in Ukraine. They are watching horrors in Iran. They are seeing climate change ravage their communities, and they are hungry for answers.
The truth is that in really hard times, often we do not know all the answers. In fact, if any one of us was to stand in this House and say we know what the world is going to be in six months, we would be lying. We live in incredibly turbulent times, and I am looking forward to hearing the hon. House leader's speech soon. We live in a time where we have to be straight with each other about what those hard things are and what the solutions are.
I really love New Orleans. I had the opportunity to go down there, and sometimes it is easier in another country to reflect on the state of their politics than it is on our own, but when I had an opportunity to talk to a young Black lady in a store about the state of being Black in America, how unjust it was and how hopeless she felt, she did not think that anybody was really speaking truthfully about the situation she and her community were facing.
That makes me think of the people we represent on both sides of the aisle, who are suffering in so many different ways that we do not always have the answer to, whether it is somebody who walks into our office who is finding they cannot afford to pay rent or somebody who walks into our office who is facing the horror of some unimaginable terror that is happening in another part of the world. When we look at them and try to give them compassion and answers, too often we all, and I will own this, have been prone to exaggeration and to having more solutions than we actually have. However, what we do in that exaggeration, on both sides, is that we allow them to think we do not really see the picture for what it is.
I will give a very specific example. On that same trip, when I walked into Studio Be, an art gallery of Black artists who are talking about the experience of being Black and the terrors they face, it was a deeply uncomfortable experience for me. It is not my country, and a lot of the horrors that were being written about are not happening to our citizens, but the injustice that has been visited upon Black people in our own country is very hard to look at and very hard to respond to. That place, though, met all of that injustice with such love, compassion, truth and forgiveness that it calls on all of us to do the same. We can yell at each other. We can deride each other, but there are old lessons that are being forgotten in that.
We look at old wisdom from something like The Lord's Prayer, something we have said so many times. It says, “Forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us.” Let us think about that as a covenant, that we cannot move forward unless we can truly understand the suffering of somebody else and understand their position.
I think, and I maybe I am Pollyanna to believe it, that we have to have more compassion for one another. I think that compassion, empathy and forgiveness are not weaknesses, but the bedrock foundation of civilization and the only things that have ever held us together. I think that in the darkest hours, and let us not lie to each other, we are in dark hours as our hospitals fill up with children, as we worry about whether key surgeries can move forward, and as we worry about the state of our planet, we need that compassion and empathy for one another, and we need the realness in our dialogue. Why do we need that realness? It is because, when we live in an environment of “gotcha” and playing games, we distort the truth.
That same woman I talked to in a shop, who was talking about the horrible conditions that she felt existed for her community, told me the world was run by 12 people. She is a deeply intelligent woman, but she believed in conspiracies because people did not speak what was true and because they attempted to take an opportunity to play games with it.
I look at the hon. House leader for the Conservatives, who is laughing right now, and I say to him—