They have Magna Corporation in that area, as the member opposite points out. They certainly have Magna Corporation in the area of Newmarket--Aurora, but it will be the citizens of Newmarket--Aurora who will be voting, not the shareholders of Magna.
I would like to go back to 1994 on a little historical tour, because I want to say something about the riding of York--Simcoe, and I quote:
...York--Simcoe is where the seeds of responsible government were first sown in Upper Canada. It was there that the rebel, William Lyon Mackenzie, joined forces with farmers and small business owners to challenge the Tory family compact.
Although it has been over 150 years since responsible government has been instituted, the descendants of those rebels have carried on the tradition of farming and operating small businesses in York--Simcoe--
That is the riding I represented before 1997.
My riding of York North was the riding of Baldwin and Lafontaine, the fathers of responsible government. When Lafontaine lost his election to a rowdy, unruly, disrespectful Conservative mob, Baldwin stepped aside and said, “Monsieur Lafontaine, we have a riding for you”. It was the good people of Newmarket who sent back a francophone in those days and it was my riding that ensured the unification of the two Canadas.
Allow me to continue. As for the farms of these rebels:
Today their farms grace the landscape of New Tecumseh, King, and east and west Gwillimbury. The world famous Holland Marsh is located near Bradford. Small businesses were and still are the heart of the economic engine in communities like Newmarket and Bradford. Their trades have always been carried out along the main streets of the villages of Sutton, Keswick, Mount Albert, Beeton, Tottenham, Pefferlaw and Schomberg.
The two ridings are now forming and making up the boundaries of those communities.
My riding is also graced with the beautiful beaches of Georgina along Lake Simcoe. A tourist trade booms here all year long, with boating in the summer and ice fishing in the winter.
We are also very fortunate to have a first nations band, the Chippewas of Georgina Island First Nation, and this community is determined to achieve its inherent right of self-government.
Mr. Speaker, I have to tell you that there have been remarkable achievements that I have been able to participate in with that community.
There are members in this House from all kinds of backgrounds and all kinds of ethnic backgrounds. They come in all shapes, sizes, colours, genders and sexual orientations. Each of us interprets our job as a member of Parliament in our own way, very differently, some more differently than others. Some members are very good in front of cameras and some not so good.
Unfortunately, the public does not have the opportunity to see what the vast majority of the members of Parliament in this House actually do. There might be a handful of members who actually appear on the front pages of national newspapers or actually get in front of the cameras of this nation, but the vast majority of the members of the House work quietly and diligently, acting on behalf of their constituents and on behalf of Canadians.
I hope that the last few weeks have not tarnished the image of members of Parliament, because indeed it is a unique privilege to serve Canadians. We do not come here alone. We can only come to this place because people participate in the democratic process. We have volunteers who support us, who cheer us on, who chastise us, and who remind us of who we actually represent and who we are. They come out on election day and put up signs. I have the best sign team around and that best sign team is going to be working in my two new ridings, let me tell you, Mr. Speaker. They put up signs, knock on doors, make telephone calls, make coffee, buy doughnuts and put on events for their colleagues and the volunteers. They drive buses. They make sure that people who would not otherwise be able to vote actually get to vote on election day. For all of those volunteers, I would like to say thanks from the bottom of my heart.
I would also like to thank the people I work with in my constituency office, Debbie McDonald and Rae Bowie, and in my Hill office, Alison Zinni, Tom Balint and Curtis Runions.
Most importantly, we do not come here unless we have the support of our families. My father, Alex Kraft, said, “You are going to Ottawa. Why wouldn't you go?” He always treated me as though I was the first male child of my family, and I have two other sisters. I have to say thanks to my dad. My mom is no longer with us but she is here shining on me today. Her humble, genuine respect of individuals is something that I hope will guide me through the rest of my days.
I have a husband who was the first male feminist I ever met, so I decided I had better marry him. Life here is very difficult and it is hard to hang on to those important relationships, but there is a guy waiting for me in Toronto tonight and I want to be on that 8 o'clock flight.
I would also like to thank my daughter Jessica and my son Patrick. Their courage, their maturity and their wisdom have helped me immeasurably.
For my colleagues sitting in the chamber on both sides of the House, let me say with no partisanship, because it is our loyalty to Parliament that is the most important thing, that we merely pass through this place. Some of us are here for decades, some for maybe only months. Some contributions are great. Some contributions are small.
We merely pass through this place. Even though our words in Hansard will crumble and fade away or get zapped into some electronic netherworld, this place will continue. It is this place that we must continue to respect, because this place is what Canadian democracy is all about. This place is not merely the House of Commons. This is the home of Canadians.