The Bill C-311 Ottawa Update: part five
In spite of promising there would be no Part 5, it would at this point seem almost uncharacteristic of this Bill to not have yet another twist and turn along the way to what will hopefully one day soon be royal assent.
Once again (and at the very last moment I might add) I was sent a note by my House Leader’s staff that they needed to speak with me right away- unusual for me during Question Period. I was then informed of a yet to be proposed NDP motion that would call for a standing vote on Bill C311 next Wednesday, June 6th.
As many of you know, the Bill was already set to come before the House next Wednesday for debate, however if there was not unanimous consent to move the Bill to the Senate or for whatever reason the debate was delayed, a standing vote would be required and would not occur until the following Wednesday and that of course would be a further delay. While the Bill was expected to get unanimous support next week, it is always possible that some other derailment could come along; at this point it almost seems in keeping in character with the Bill to not have yet another obstacle come along. Clearly there is a reason why it has taken well over 80 years to change this out of date and unjust law!
In effect this motion effectively calls for the 2nd hour of debate to be bypassed and instead calls for an immediate standing order vote to occur on June 6th instead. Obviously this helps to add certainty to the Bill, but more importantly as it was the NDP who actually was the source of creating the uncertainty in the first place this is a message from the NDP that they will now be supporting the Bill going forward to the Senate and that is something I am very encouraged to hear.
Suffice to say I welcomed the NDP motion as did my colleagues and Bill C-311 will now come before the house for a standing vote next Wednesday. While the initial NDP filibuster will still end up delaying the Bill from a week of precious time in the Senate, I do want to commend the NDP for listening to Canadians as well as the Canadian wine industry and doing the right thing here. More importantly is that the Bill will now move one step closer to opening up the Canadian wine market to Canadian wine producers and that is ultimately our goal with Bill C-311. In summary this is another good day for the Bill, a good day for Canadian wine fans and a great day for the Canadian wine industry.