May 31, 1984 (32nd Parliament, 2nd Session)


Ian Deans (N.D.P. House Leader)

New Democratic Party

Mr. Deans:

I can say it without tongue in cheek because it is factual. We also contend that we are entitled to a votable motion. However the Hon. House Leader for the Official Opposition puts it, there can be no argument over the statistics. If you do it in this trimester, Mr. Speaker, in 1984 there would be 13 days allotted. Of those, two would be votable days. We contend, on the basis of three to one, that if the Conservatives get ten of those days, which is what they would get if we were given this day, we would be satisfied. Out of 13, the Conservatives get ten and we get three. That is all we are asking for; that is all we expect in the interest of fairness.
You will have noted, I am sure, that the Conservatives have put down for today a votable motion. If we are not allocated this day, that means there is no votable motion available after the vote is taken today at six o'clock. Therefore, it would not be possible, even if we were to be allotted the next allotted day, for us to be given a vote during this trimester. I contend that in fairness, which is all we ask for, we are entitled to one voting day.
I will now go back three trimesters. In the last trimester there were seven days, five taken by the Conservatives. They asked us to take two and we did, but we got no vote. In the previous trimester, the third trimester of last year, there were five allotted days. Four were taken by the Conservatives; one was offered to us, which we accepted, without a vote.
Looking at the third trimester of last year, the first trimester of this year, and this trimester which ends at the end of June, there have been 25 allotted days, or will have been. If you were to decide today that we were entitled to the day, then 19 of them would have been allotted to the Conservative Party and six of them to the NDP. That is as close as a three-to-one ratio could ever be. That is in keeping with the numbers within the House of Commons.
In addition to that, if you were to decide, as you have indicated you might in your preliminary judgment, that we were entitled to this day and that it is a voting day, it will be the first voting day that we have been granted in the last three trimesters. Taking that into account, it would seem that we would be entitled to have this particular-

Full View