Continuing with my roundup of queer MPs at year-end, I spoke to Liberal Rob Oliphant earlier in the week.
Q: What were the high point and the low point of the sitting for you?
A: It was probably ensuring that the gun registry was maintained, and that we didn’t lose control over the gun registry and the registration of long guns. The low point was probably the introduction of Bill C-49 – simply that it is, for me, one of the most blatantly un-Canadian bills that has been presented by this government since I was here. It was so explicitly political, so explicitly mean-spirited, and so explicitly won’t work that it’s a low-point.
Q: Same again for the whole of 2010?
A: A high point for the whole of the year might have been the Liberal Express tour in the summer. I was off and on it in BC, the Yukon, Manitoba and Ontario, and it was just great to see crowds, to get to see the leader performing well. Marco was with me for parts of it; we had fun with the kids who were running the show, and it was fun to be on a bus and see parts of the country. That was a highlight. A low point for the whole year is probably my dad getting sick in the fall – the advancing of his prostate cancer. It’s something that people go through, and we all go through it, but he’s been an amazing rock in my life, and an amazing supporter. I’m not sure he’s my best fan or my second-best fan – my parents fight for that position. I think they’re tied.
Q: Your biggest accomplishment of the fall sitting?
A: It might be just this week getting a private member’s bill that I’ve been working on for five months done. Fourteen drafts to get a piece of legislation done that I think is up to the standards of a government bill. It’s a bill that will help veterans – it’s the end of an old piece of work, but I feel like I’m ending the year on a good note, of getting a piece of work done so that I can move on and do some other stuff. But the bill is introduced, it’s tabled, and it’ll sit there on the Order Paper until my number is drawn, but that would be my best accomplishment for the year.
Q: And what are your holiday plans?
A: I’m going to Sault Ste Marie and spending the better part of a week with my whole family. It’ll be the whole immediate family, the in-laws, the grandchildren, and the complete family will be there for the first time in probably 25 years that we’ve all been there at the same time. It’s a good thing.