Mr. Speaker, I too would like to offer either my congratulations or my condolences to you. I think your job is going to be interesting over the next four or five years. I wish you well and I look forward to it.
I will be sharing my time with the member for Waterloo—Wellington who will speak after me.
I would like to begin by paying tribute to my predecessors who have represented Mississauga West. Mississauga Centre became the new riding in the redistribution and the member previous for Mississauga West is now the member for Mississauga Centre; prior to her Dr. Bob Horner, a good friend and a wonderful man, unfortunately with the Conservative Party, although not his fault; prior to him of course Doug Fisher, a good long time Liberal, and Tony Abbot before him.
My riding has always sent a representative to the government, no matter what party happened to be elected. Fortunately for me it has done so once again.
Specifically I would like to thank the voters of Mississauga West for their confidence in sending me to Ottawa to represent them in this place. Mississauga West is an interesting riding made up of three very distinct communities, Streetsville, Erin Mills and Meadowvale. The perception of the riding is really different than the reality, as is probably true of many ridings. The perception is that it is a riding with high average incomes. It is mainly family and small business oriented, a riding of baby boomers one might say.
In addition we have our share of concerns and problems. I frankly take exception to a member of the House standing in his place and saying that because we are Liberals in the government we do not care about people. That is absolute nonsense. It is stuff that I have listened to for five years in opposition to the NDP in the parliament of Ontario. It is interesting that is almost déja vu in this place.
We care about social housing problems. We need more in my riding. I was the president of the Peel non-profit housing while a member of Peel regional council. I was on that board for nine years. We have women's shelters and a food bank. We want to end the systemic violence against women and children, and no individual or political party in the House has cornered those concepts and ideas.
We have youth unemployment and under employment. I have three sons in their 20s and I am concerned about their future the same as all parents care about the future of their children. We have new Canadians, refugees who need help to adjust. We have crime. We need to fight crime to take back our streets. We in the Liberal Party believe that we can do all of those things by providing a balance.
That brings me to my point with regard the throne speech. We will not govern on the extremes of the right or the extremes of the left. Rather we will bring a balance to the government of this great country. We hear calls to spend more from the left. I sat and watched an NDP government in Ontario take the total debt of that province from $39 billion in 1990 to over $100 billion in 1995, which literally destroyed the confidence of one of our greatest provinces. What I hear from the party of the left is to spend more.
I watched what the Tories did. It was interesting to hear the sound bite this morning on the news of the leader of what I believe is the fifth party in this beautiful establishment, the leader of the Progressive Conservatives, who said that there was a sign over the Prime Minister's door which reads “send it and we will spend it”. There was a sign over Mr. Mulroney's door which read “we will spend it before you send it”. The NDP sign would say “we will spend it. You send it and we will spend it again”. That is the nonsense of getting into extremes.
I find the official opposition to be rather interesting. It is the politics of Ross Perot. It uses analogies like Ross Perot would do when he says on television “If you want to know why the car won't run, you have to open up the hood and look at the engine”. I heard the Leader of the Opposition say that they have fixed one of the flat tires on the car. I heard the speaker from the Reform Party this morning go through some incredible analogy about a ship at sea going down the Niagara River. He lost most Canadians and most people in the House before he got on board the particular ship.