House of Commons Hansard #143 of the 37th Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was species.

Topics

Foreign Affairs
Oral Question Period

2:35 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

Brian Pallister Portage—Lisgar, MB

Mr. Speaker, I am pleased to hear the minister's comments. In the past the Prime Minister has supported military action against Iraq as well. He said that if we did not intervene our inaction would encourage Hussein to commit other atrocities and prolong his reign of terror.

On the weekend the Prime Minister reversed his position. Terrorism is not just in Afghanistan. It thrives in Iraq as well. What will it take for the government to realize that there will no peace as long as Saddam Hussein is in power and that the longer he is allowed to stay the more dangerous he will become?

Foreign Affairs
Oral Question Period

2:35 p.m.

Toronto Centre—Rosedale
Ontario

Liberal

Bill Graham Minister of Foreign Affairs

Mr. Speaker, as I have said to the House, the government has been very firm in its actions in respect of Iraq. We are not fooled by any suggestions of Saddam Hussein. We continue to work strongly throughout the United Nations framework to ensure that sanctions will be applied and to ensure that inspections will take place.

We will continue in the future to examine all options necessary to ensure that they do not acquire weapons of mass destruction. The Prime Minister has made that clear.

Taxation
Oral Question Period

2:35 p.m.

Bloc

Yvan Loubier Saint-Hyacinthe—Bagot, QC

Mr. Speaker, the Minister of Intergovernmental Affairs says that tax imbalance is a myth, but while the federal government is going into individual taxpayer's pockets for close to 60% of its tax revenue, the figure for the Quebec government is only 40%.

Yet it is the government of Quebec which has responsibility for the delivery of direct and major services to its citizens, such as health and education.

Does the Minister of Finance share his colleague's point of view, and deny that his government gets 60% of its tax money from the pockets of Quebec taxpayers, while not responsible for either health or education, which are major areas of intervention?

Taxation
Oral Question Period

2:35 p.m.

LaSalle—Émard
Québec

Liberal

Paul Martin Minister of Finance

Mr. Speaker, the figures the hon. member has quoted predate the tax abatement. Taking the abatement into consideration, Quebec collects more in taxes than the Canadian government.

Taxation
Oral Question Period

2:35 p.m.

Bloc

Yvan Loubier Saint-Hyacinthe—Bagot, QC

Mr. Speaker, instead of taking his responsibilities seriously, the Minister of Finance prefers to work on his leadership aspirations, to the detriment of a real, serious debate on a question as fundamental as this.

Does the minister not agree that in 1977-78, had the cash transfers been rightly replaced with tax points, Quebec would have in its coffers at the present time $4.5 billion more to put to health and education? If tax points are not a paying proposition, one wonders what is.

Could the minister give the Minister of Intergovernmental Affairs a taxation 101 course so that he will quit talking nonsense?

Taxation
Oral Question Period

2:35 p.m.

LaSalle—Émard
Québec

Liberal

Paul Martin Minister of Finance

Mr. Speaker, the Minister of Intergovernmental Affairs is not the one who needs a course, it is the Bloc critic.

In 1999, Quebec's total revenues were $16 billion more than the Canadian government's tax receipts from Quebec.

Health
Oral Question Period

2:35 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

Rob Merrifield Yellowhead, AB

Mr. Speaker, last October the former health minister promised that within three months there would be a network of 1,500 trainers who would instruct personnel at a local level to be ready to respond to bioterrorist attacks.

We have learned that the first training session would begin this month in Ottawa. The department has had trouble finding even a dozen doctors for the program. How many emergency personnel are currently being trained across Canada?

Health
Oral Question Period

2:35 p.m.

Edmonton West
Alberta

Liberal

Anne McLellan Minister of Health

Mr. Speaker, I am unable this afternoon to give the hon. member the exact number, but let me reassure everyone in the House and all Canadians that the Department of Health working in partnership with other federal, provincial and territorial departments take emergency preparedness very seriously.

We are working in partnership to ensure that we have the plans in place to protect Canadians against all threats.

Health
Oral Question Period

2:35 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

Rob Merrifield Yellowhead, AB

Mr. Speaker, on October 18 the then minister of health bragged because he had a plan. The training of 1,500 experts was to begin in three months and the uptake, in his words, would be very significant.

It appears that the present minister has been left out on a limb by her predecessor. What assurance do Canadians have that the country is ready to respond to a bioterrorist attack?

Health
Oral Question Period

2:40 p.m.

Edmonton West
Alberta

Liberal

Anne McLellan Minister of Health

Mr. Speaker, I certainly thank the hon. member for his concern about my position, but let me reassure him that I am not out on any limb.

As I said earlier, we take emergency preparedness very seriously. I cannot give the hon. member the exact numbers today but I would happy to do so in response to his question.

Canadians should be reassured that we in the federal government are working with our provincial and territorial colleagues to meet any risk to the health and safety of Canadians.

Official Languages
Oral Question Period

February 18th, 2002 / 2:40 p.m.

Liberal

Dominic LeBlanc Beauséjour—Petitcodiac, NB

Mr. Speaker, last Friday, the President of the Privy Council was at the Université de Moncton to announce the creation of the National Research Institute on Linguistic Minorities, thanks to a $10 million investment by the Government of Canada.

Will the minister tell us how this will benefit official language communities in Canada?

Official Languages
Oral Question Period

2:40 p.m.

Saint-Laurent—Cartierville
Québec

Liberal

Stéphane Dion President of the Queen's Privy Council for Canada and Minister of Intergovernmental Affairs

Mr. Speaker, just as the Government of Canada helped the Royal Commission on Bilingualism and Biculturalism launch many avenues of research in the 1960s, which culminated in the fundamental principles contained in the Official Languages Act and a good part of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms, as we enter the 21st century, we are helping to fund a research centre at the Université de Moncton which will enable us to promote Canada's linguistic duality and the development of our official language communities in the best possible conditions.

Transport
Oral Question Period

2:40 p.m.

NDP

Joe Comartin Windsor—St. Clair, ON

Mr. Speaker, approximately two weeks ago the Minister of Finance, speaking to a municipal conference, pledged a new deal in the relationship between the federal government and the financing it provides to municipalities.

This past weekend the Minister of Transport appears to be stuck in the old deal among the provinces, the federal government and the city of Toronto with regard to Toronto transit.

Will the Minister of Transport get in line with the Minister of Finance, go with the new deal, put some dollars on the table and get that project going?

Transport
Oral Question Period

2:40 p.m.

Don Valley East
Ontario

Liberal

David Collenette Minister of Transport

Mr. Speaker, this is now the third time the hon. member for Windsor--St. Clair has become an apologist for the Mike Harris government and the fact that the Harris Tories have taken away transit funding for three or four years.

They have decided under great pressure to come back with 30 cent dollars. The federal government will not make up for that shortfall. The Harris Tories have to fund transit to its fullest before we do anything to help.

Health
Oral Question Period

2:40 p.m.

NDP

Judy Wasylycia-Leis Winnipeg North Centre, MB

Mr. Speaker, this weekend the health minister said she would appreciate if the provinces waited on the Romanow commission before making major changes to health care.

What is more fundamental than Alberta introducing a new profit driven tier of hospitals, hospitals that will not save the public money but will provide a cash cow for investors? Canadians would appreciate it if the minister stopped the wishful thinking and did something to keep medicare intact. What will the minister do to stop private hospitals?