Mr. Gerald Keddy (South Shore, CPC)
Mr. Speaker, I listened closely to my hon. colleague's speech. To be honest, it kind of reminded me of the Prime Minister's trip to see President Bush. He promised that everything would be fixed, that softwood lumber would move, that cattle would move. However, when we read the fine print, nothing has changed and it is business as usual. The cattle are not moving. There is no progress and no future to see cattle moving. Softwood lumber had nothing to do with the Prime Minister. We would still be waiting for the wood to be sawn, if it did.
Now we have legislation here that has not been clearly thought out. The main difficulty I have with the bill is very simple. This legislation does precisely the opposite of what it is supposed to do. It allows certain aboriginal organizations to prevail over certain regulations.
It is important that all Canadians, especially Atlantic Canadians and Canadians who live in maritime regions, whether it is B.C. or Atlantic Canada, to know exactly what those regulations are.
The minister was having difficulty explaining the regulations. It is important to know if is it just a matter of licensing or if it is simply a matter of who will fish first. We live with that already. That is not a difficulty. Is there something else that we do not know about?
Under Marshall, we understand there is the right to fish. That is a given. Under Sparrow there is a right to fish. Those rights can be accommodated and they are being accommodated. What we need to know is exactly what they mean when certain aboriginal organizations have a right to prevail over certain regulations.
Subtopic: Fisheries Act