Jobs, Growth and Long-term Prosperity Act (Bill C-38)

Elizabeth May: Mr. Speaker, I want to thank my hon. friend from Kildonan—St. Paul who is one of the hardest working MPs and who has done so much for people in the human trafficking area.

I rarely get to ask her a question so it pains me to ask her one on this issue. Bill C-38, despite the few things I like, such as allowing recovering people to work while they are on EI, claim that and not have it all clawed back, contains some measures that are good but overall I am so very deeply aggrieved by the number of bills that are thrown into Bill C-38 that are not part of proper fiscal measures, particularly those overhauls of the Canadian Environment Assessment Act, the Fisheries Act, the Species at Risk Act and so on.

I would like to ask my hon. friend if she does not think there is some chance that the Minister of Finance might relent and pull out those sections that are not properly part of a budget, so they can be properly and separately debated?

Joy Smith: Mr. Speaker, the hon. member is an amazing woman and has done a lot of things in this country. I respect her question. However, in a time of economic downturn, in this very fragile economy, choices have to be made and the bottom line is job growth. The bottom line is to make sure people can have jobs to feed their families. I would think that a government with true leadership would pick those priorities very carefully.

Sometimes it is painful when other things cannot be included because we want to be all things to all people. What a government does and what Canadians expect is for the government to keep them safe, to make sure they have the job opportunities and to keep this country stable. That is what we are doing.