House of Commons Hansard #186 of the 36th Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was first.

Topics

Airbus
Oral Question Period

2:25 p.m.

Cardigan
P.E.I.

Liberal

Lawrence MacAulay Solicitor General of Canada

Mr. Speaker, as solicitor general I do not direct the activities of the RCMP.

Airbus
Oral Question Period

2:25 p.m.

Progressive Conservative

Peter MacKay Pictou—Antigonish—Guysborough, NS

Mr. Speaker, he should tell that to a former solicitor general.

For years now Canadians have witnessed this farcical saga that resulted in a forced half-hearted apology to Mr. Mulroney, followed by RCMP investigators then continuing and expanding the investigation.

With law enforcement cuts resulting in the impending collapse of CPIC, depleted organized crime budgets and the closure of a cadet college, I question the government's priorities.

When will the government cut its losses, put an end to this ill-founded investigation and focus on the replenishment of scarce police resources for the better protection of Canadians?

Airbus
Oral Question Period

2:30 p.m.

Cardigan
P.E.I.

Liberal

Lawrence MacAulay Solicitor General of Canada

Mr. Speaker, as I indicated previously I do not direct investigations in the RCMP.

I am surprised that my hon. colleague would be talking about scarce funds when the leader of the Progressive Conservative Party today had a direct hand in putting this country in one of the worst financial messes ever. This government had a saviour and was able to appoint a Minister of Finance who could direct the government and put the finances of this country in place. That is why—

Airbus
Oral Question Period

2:30 p.m.

Some hon. members

Hear, hear.

Airbus
Oral Question Period

2:30 p.m.

The Speaker

The hon. member for Prince George—Peace River.

Justice
Oral Question Period

March 1st, 1999 / 2:30 p.m.

Reform

Jay Hill Prince George—Peace River, BC

Mr. Speaker, according to the justice minister child porn is not a problem in British Columbia. She says “police are investigating, charges are being laid and prosecutions are taking place as they always have”. Wrong.

Just last week a judge in Vernon, B.C. refused to accept a guilty plea from a man charged with possession of child porn because she said the charges were unconstitutional pending the April court appeal.

Why did the justice minister tell British Columbians that everything is okay when in fact it is not?

Justice
Oral Question Period

2:30 p.m.

Ahuntsic
Québec

Liberal

Eleni Bakopanos Parliamentary Secretary to Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada

Mr. Speaker, as has been stated by the minister in the House, the case is under appeal. The Court of Appeal of British Columbia will be hearing the case in early April. We, unlike the official opposition, respect the due process of law and will continue to monitor the decisions of the courts in British Columbia.

I also want to say that the Minister of Justice has been talking to her colleague, the attorney general, and the law still is the law of the land.

Justice
Oral Question Period

2:30 p.m.

Reform

Jay Hill Prince George—Peace River, BC

Mr. Speaker, that legalistic mumbo-jumbo might cut it with Liberal backbenchers, but the facts are that it will not cut it with parents in British Columbia.

Glen Kelly knew he was guilty. He knew he did wrong. He should have been punished for his perversion. Yet in British Columbia judges cannot even accept a guilty plea for this disgusting crime.

Why should police continue to investigate and crown prosecutors prosecute if a guilty verdict will not be allowed by judges in B.C.?

Justice
Oral Question Period

2:30 p.m.

Ahuntsic
Québec

Liberal

Eleni Bakopanos Parliamentary Secretary to Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada

Mr. Speaker, this is another example of the due process of law not being respected by the official opposition. The justice system in this country is one of the best in the world. We are awaiting the appeal of this case which is coming in April.

Employment Insurance Fund
Oral Question Period

2:30 p.m.

Bloc

Christiane Gagnon Québec, QC

Mr. Speaker, the Minister of Human Resources Development is pondering the fact that his government is dipping into the employment insurance surplus to invest in health care or to lower taxes.

Could the Minister of Human Resources Development tell us finally where the $20 billion from the employment insurance fund really went? Will he tell us where the contributors' money went?

Employment Insurance Fund
Oral Question Period

2:30 p.m.

Papineau—Saint-Denis
Québec

Liberal

Pierre Pettigrew Minister of Human Resources Development

Mr. Speaker, the employment insurance funds have been in the same place since 1986, that is within the Canadian government's consolidated revenue fund.

Employment Insurance Fund
Oral Question Period

2:30 p.m.

Bloc

Christiane Gagnon Québec, QC

Mr. Speaker, it may not be immoral to take money from the employment insurance fund, but does he not consider it immoral to cut off the resources of entire families, which are going hungry because he has reduced their benefits in order to accumulate such a surplus?

Employment Insurance Fund
Oral Question Period

2:30 p.m.

Papineau—Saint-Denis
Québec

Liberal

Pierre Pettigrew Minister of Human Resources Development

Mr. Speaker, the argument is rather bizarre.

What I can say is that we reformed employment insurance so that, on the contrary, people would no longer as dependent and so they could return to the labour market. All the Bloc wants is to have as many people as possible unemployed for as long as possible.

That is not helping people. We want to help people by helping them return to the labour market, because this is what people expect from good government.

The Canadian Broadcasting Corporation
Oral Question Period

2:30 p.m.

Independent

John Nunziata York South—Weston, ON

Mr. Speaker, my question is for the Minister of Canadian Heritage. The government is consistently attacking the independence of the CBC. Reports indicate that the government intends to appoint a news czar in Ottawa to oversee the journalistic operations of the CBC. This is a direct challenge to the independence of the CBC.

Why is the government trying to create a mouthpiece for the government through the CBC? Does the minister know the difference between a state broadcaster and a public broadcaster?

The Canadian Broadcasting Corporation
Oral Question Period

2:35 p.m.

Hamilton East
Ontario

Liberal

Sheila Copps Minister of Canadian Heritage

Mr. Speaker, the government has no intention of making any such appointment.