House of Commons Hansard #19 of the 37th Parliament, 2nd Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was opposition.

Topics

Terrorism
Oral Question Period

2:40 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

Stockwell Day Okanagan—Coquihalla, BC

Mr. Speaker, the new minister is learning quickly how not to answer questions. I will try another one on him. The former CSIS director, Mr. Reid Morden said:

I'm sure there is a very large political calculation in the nervousness with which the government is clearly addressing this. I guess I feel rather critical of that.

Here we have the former director of CSIS suggesting the government will not ban Hezbollah because it wants to placate certain interest groups that support the Liberals.

By failing to ban all fundraising and other activities of the terrorist group Hezbollah, is the Liberal government being naively negligent or grossly partisan? Which of those two is it?

Terrorism
Oral Question Period

2:40 p.m.

Malpeque
P.E.I.

Liberal

Wayne Easter Solicitor General of Canada

Mr. Speaker, I would refer the hon. member to the SIRC just tabled in which it addresses not this specific issue, but finding the balance. I will quote from the document. It says:

In watching over the activities of CSIS, the Review Committee helps ensure that balance is maintained. Although we must be sensitive to public and expert opinion—and take deliberate steps to inform ourselves—we must also take care not to be unduly swayed.

The SIRC report is saying is that CSIS is doing its job and doing it correctly.

The Environment
Oral Question Period

2:40 p.m.

Liberal

Rose-Marie Ur Lambton—Kent—Middlesex, ON

Mr. Speaker, my question is for the Minister of Natural Resources. I am pleased that the government has set a target of 1 billion litres of ethanol to be produced each year by 2010.

Would the Minister of Natural Resources explain to the House and to all Canadians how the government plans to meet these targets?

The Environment
Oral Question Period

2:40 p.m.

Vancouver South—Burnaby
B.C.

Liberal

Herb Dhaliwal Minister of Natural Resources

Mr. Speaker, I want to congratulate the member for Lambton--Kent--Middlesex for her good work in terms of ethanol and the rural caucus. They have been moving this agenda forward. That is why the Government of Canada has exempted the excise tax up to 10¢ for ethanol. We have invested in loan guarantees. We are investing in research and development. Part of our climate change plan is to ensure that more ethanol is used in fuel so we can protect the environment and do our job on climate change.

Coast Guard
Oral Question Period

2:45 p.m.

NDP

Peter Stoffer Sackville—Musquodoboit Valley—Eastern Shore, NS

Mr. Speaker, the men and women who work for our coast guard are some of the bravest people in Canada, willing to risk their lives at any moment to save the lives of mariners around the world. Those same people feel very let down by their government in terms of continuous cutbacks to the coast guard. The Minister of National Defence should be congratulated for seeking more revenue than resources from his cabinet.

I directly ask the Minister of Fisheries and Oceans to speak to the men and women of the coast guard. Will he now go to his cabinet and fight for more resources for the brave men and women of our coast guard?

Coast Guard
Oral Question Period

2:45 p.m.

West Nova
Nova Scotia

Liberal

Robert Thibault Minister of Fisheries and Oceans

Mr. Speaker, I would like to join with the member for Musquodoboit Valley--Eastern Shore and say that the Minister of National Defence serves as an example to us all.

I agree with the member that the men and women of the Canadian Coast Guard do a great job. The Government of Canada takes the recapitalization of the coast guard very seriously. In the year 2000 we committed $115 million for the replacement of over 40, 47 foot life boats. Half of them have been delivered and the other half under are construction.

At cabinet we discussed the future capitalization requirements of the coast guard, and I discuss this with the Minister of Finance, not in press conferences.

Persons with Disabilities
Oral Question Period

2:45 p.m.

NDP

Libby Davies Vancouver East, BC

Mr. Speaker, the minister for HRDC claims she is concerned about Canadians with disabilities, but in B.C. up to 18,000 people with disabilities could be eliminated from benefits because of Gordon Campbell's draconian policies.

Why is the minister's government so willing to defend corporate rights when it comes to international agreements, but ignores the rights of the poor and disabled as defined in international agreements and committed to by her government? Why is her government so silent on defending these basic human rights as defined in international agreements? Why is she not standing up and defending those people in B.C.?

Persons with Disabilities
Oral Question Period

2:45 p.m.

Brant
Ontario

Liberal

Jane Stewart Minister of Human Resources Development

Mr. Speaker, when it comes to Canadians with disabilities the government has a long and positive track record. I want to remind the hon. member of the fact that through our opportunities fund we invest over $40 million a year ensuring that Canadians with disabilities have got access to the workplace.

I also want to remind the hon. member that every year the government transfers $193 million to the provinces to assist Canadians with disabilities find employability.

We continue to work with our provinces to build a system of employability to ensure that Canadians have the support they need to work in the Canadian economy. We will continue to work with them.

Financial Institutions
Oral Question Period

2:45 p.m.

Progressive Conservative

Scott Brison Kings—Hants, NS

Mr. Speaker, the Prime Minister said in the House on Tuesday, “The Minister of Finance has all authority on the Bank Act”. That is what the Minister of Finance thought too when he encouraged bank merger discussions this summer.

Why did the Prime Minister reverse the decision of his own finance minister by shutting down these bank merger discussions? Does he not trust his minister's judgment on this issue?

Financial Institutions
Oral Question Period

2:45 p.m.

Ottawa South
Ontario

Liberal

John Manley Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance

Mr. Speaker, there was no decision to reverse. There is a law. It was passed last year in the House, called Bill C-8. It provides for formal applications for mergers. If banks wish to make a proposal under the law, they are perfectly free to do so.

Financial Institutions
Oral Question Period

2:45 p.m.

Progressive Conservative

Scott Brison Kings—Hants, NS

Mr. Speaker, according to senior bank officials, at Scotiabank and the Bank of Montreal, they were told by the finance minister to explore merging. The same bank officials also say that the Prime Minister's Office shut down the merger talks saying that there would be no bank mergers until after the Prime Minister's retirement in 2004.

Would the Minister of Finance please explain the relevance of the Prime Minister's retirement schedule to the Canadian banking industry?

Financial Institutions
Oral Question Period

2:45 p.m.

Ottawa South
Ontario

Liberal

John Manley Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance

Mr. Speaker, I do not know whether the people who the member refers to said the things he claims they said. If they did, they are not true.

Public Safety
Oral Question Period

October 31st, 2002 / 2:45 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

James Moore Port Moody—Coquitlam—Port Coquitlam, BC

Mr. Speaker, after the events of September 11, the United States passed antiterrorism legislation in less than 11 weeks. The Liberals, however, took 13 months and three attempts to present legislation that was clearly inferior to what the Americans came up with.

Why must Canadians wait so long for so little when it comes to their safety?

Public Safety
Oral Question Period

2:45 p.m.

Don Valley East
Ontario

Liberal

David Collenette Minister of Transport

Mr. Speaker, there is a very good reason for that. After reflection and debate in the House, the government listened to members on this side and on the other side and improved the legislation. That is why we introduced Bill C-17 today, an improved bill that will guarantee our security.

Public Safety
Oral Question Period

2:45 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

James Moore Port Moody—Coquitlam—Port Coquitlam, BC

Mr. Speaker, September 11 happened and inside of 11 weeks the U.S. house of representatives drafted a bill, passed it through the house, passed it through the senate and had a signature from the president of the United States. It has taken this government 13 and a half months and three drafts to put together a piece of legislation that does nothing to address the port securities in this country and the fact that Hezbollah is operating in Canada. The government does not take terrorism seriously.

Why does it take the government so long to deliver so little on our country's security?