House of Commons Hansard #21 of the 37th Parliament, 2nd Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was budget.

Topics

Foreign Affairs
Oral Question Period

November 4th, 2002 / 2:20 p.m.

NDP

Alexa McDonough Halifax, NS

Mr. Speaker, in spite of the Minister of Foreign Affairs' assurances to the contrary last week, Canadians born in the Middle East are still required to provide fingerprints at the border. They are still being photographed and flagged.

The U.S. is targeting Canadian citizens on the basis of their country of origin.

Why is this discriminatory practice still going on?

Foreign Affairs
Oral Question Period

2:25 p.m.

Toronto Centre—Rosedale
Ontario

Liberal

Bill Graham Minister of Foreign Affairs

Mr. Speaker, we have had the assurance of the U.S. ambassador to Canada that it would end.

As I said the other day, naturally, it may take some time for the administration or officials in the administration to act on broad policies, but I am confident that this practice will end, as we were assured by the United States. We have established a good relationship with the U.S. on this issue.

Foreign Affairs
Oral Question Period

2:25 p.m.

NDP

Alexa McDonough Halifax, NS

Mr. Speaker, I do not know how the minister can be satisfied. He must know that a veteran INS inspector yesterday stated that the discriminatory inspections of Canadians born in the Middle East remains in force. I quote his words further, “Canada took what they wanted out of a conversation with Mr. Powell and came away believing that we were not going to do the security entry/exit registration on their citizens”.

We have a copy of the memo implementing the U.S. policy but nowhere can we find a memo cancelling that policy for Canadian citizens. Has the minister received such written information and if so, will he table it in the House?

Foreign Affairs
Oral Question Period

2:25 p.m.

Toronto Centre—Rosedale
Ontario

Liberal

Bill Graham Minister of Foreign Affairs

Mr. Speaker, I had a personal conversation with the ambassador who assured me that he had spoken to Mr. Ashcroft and Mr. Powell and instructions would flow to end this practice. I believe that the ambassador had a similar conversation with the leader of the fifth party.

The ambassador of the United States has issued a press release stating that this practice is coming to an end. I have total confidence that the ambassador of the United States is stating to this country what is the official policy of the United States of America.

Foreign Affairs
Oral Question Period

2:25 p.m.

Progressive Conservative

Joe Clark Calgary Centre, AB

Mr. Speaker, last week the Prime Minister and the Minister of Finance gave contrary messages on bank mergers. Two weeks ago the Minister of National Defence announced his own unauthorized policy on defence spending.

Today the Minister of Citizenship and Immigration says it is wrong for the U.S. to apply what he calls racial profiling to Canadian landed immigrants from Commonwealth countries. The Minister of Foreign Affairs by contrast says the United States is perfectly entitled to make its own policies about Canadian landed immigrants.

Of these two warring ministers, who speaks for the government, or do neither of them speak for the government?

Foreign Affairs
Oral Question Period

2:25 p.m.

Toronto Centre—Rosedale
Ontario

Liberal

Bill Graham Minister of Foreign Affairs

Mr. Speaker, the Minister of Citizenship and Immigration and I never enter into war. We are the best of collaborators on all these things.

The Minister of Citizenship and Immigration made a very good point saying that landed immigrants in this country are reliable because they are admitted to this country under very strict guidelines. We will continue to tell our American colleagues that fact.

It is also a fact however that the practice of visas is one that is followed. This is not a visa that is being applied to Canadian citizens. We must therefore respect what the United States is doing while at the same time drawing to its attention the nature of Canada, the nature of our immigration policies and the desire we have to have a free and open border between our two countries.

Committees of the House
Oral Question Period

2:25 p.m.

Progressive Conservative

Joe Clark Calgary Centre, AB

You are better off with e-mails, Denis.

Committees of the House
Oral Question Period

2:25 p.m.

Some hon. members

Oh, oh.

Committees of the House
Oral Question Period

2:25 p.m.

Progressive Conservative

Joe Clark Calgary Centre, AB

Mr. Speaker, rumours abound whether individual government members will be free to vote their conscience tomorrow afternoon regarding the election of committee chairs by secret ballot.

My question is for the Deputy Prime Minister. Will the Prime Minister allow a free vote for Liberal members of Parliament on this motion to make Parliament more effective? Perhaps while he is up, the Deputy Prime Minister could tell us whether that was the Prime Minister's idea or the idea of the hon. member for LaSalle—Émard.

Committees of the House
Oral Question Period

2:25 p.m.

Glengarry—Prescott—Russell
Ontario

Liberal

Don Boudria Minister of State and Leader of the Government in the House of Commons

Mr. Speaker, the hon. member seems to be asking a question about whether or not secret ballots are permitted for the election of committee chairs. Perhaps his House leader, or former House leader who is very well versed in these issues could explain to him that they are already.

If he is inquiring otherwise on the well-being of our caucus generally, I can tell him that it is just fine.

Kyoto Protocol
Oral Question Period

2:25 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

James Moore Port Moody—Coquitlam—Port Coquitlam, BC

Mr. Speaker, the United States and Australia have chosen to develop their own emissions reduction targets rather than committing themselves to the unachievable goals of Kyoto. Other nations such as Argentina, Chile and Mexico have not committed to a firm Kyoto target. All of our major free trade partners, the U.S., Mexico and Chile, are working on their own solutions.

Why can we not have a made in Canada solution to Kyoto that balances our economic and environmental needs for the future?

Kyoto Protocol
Oral Question Period

2:30 p.m.

Victoria
B.C.

Liberal

David Anderson Minister of the Environment

Mr. Speaker, Canada did choose its own target just as other countries have done. Furthermore, Canada has developed a made in Canada plan with the cooperation of the provinces and territories. All 14 governments have been working on this for the last five years.

Kyoto Protocol
Oral Question Period

2:30 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

James Moore Port Moody—Coquitlam—Port Coquitlam, BC

Mr. Speaker, if there is a made in Canada plan, it might be a surprise to the environment minister that Kyoto is not a Canadian city. He might think it is in British Columbia, given his lack of visiting B.C., but it is not in fact a Canadian city.

If Kyoto is what he considers a made in Canada plan, then why are provinces asking for a first ministers conference to talk about the issue so we can develop a real one with real numbers?

What is the government's principal opposition to having a first ministers conference to talk about Kyoto and work out real numbers in cooperation with the provinces?

Kyoto Protocol
Oral Question Period

2:30 p.m.

Victoria
B.C.

Liberal

David Anderson Minister of the Environment

Mr. Speaker, the principal issue that the hon. member has failed to grasp about climate change is that it is a global problem and it has to be dealt with on a global basis.

With respect to the meetings we have had with the provinces and territories, I believe we have had three this year with another to come. We had two or three last year. They are virtually continuous. In fact, we had one last year where less than half the provinces sent ministers because they complained we had had too many.

Government Contracts
Oral Question Period

2:30 p.m.

Bloc

Richard Marceau Charlesbourg—Jacques-Cartier, QC

Mr. Speaker, the Minister of Public Works keeps repeating that his department was the one that ultimately authorized the contract to Everest. That is not the problem; the problem is whether the former Secretary of State for Amateur Sport intervened on behalf of Everest in securing the contract.

Is the Minister of Public Works prepared to rise in his place and state that the former Secretary of State for Amateur Sport did not get involved at any time before Public Works Canada awarded the contract to Everest?