House of Commons Hansard #61 of the 37th Parliament, 2nd Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was referendum.

Topics

Taxation
Oral Question Period

2:15 p.m.

Saint-Maurice
Québec

Liberal

Jean Chrétien Prime Minister

Mr. Speaker, we have done what we promised, namely to harmonize the goods and services tax with the provincial governments' sales tax. This tax was a replacement for the tax on manufactured goods.

It was a matter of replacing one tax by another, and now here we are with an economy that is working well. We receive these taxes and are enabled as a result to reduce others. For instance, last week we were able to invest $35 billion, in connection with an agreement with the provincial governments on—

Taxation
Oral Question Period

2:20 p.m.

The Speaker

The hon. member for Peace River.

Taxation
Oral Question Period

2:20 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

Charlie Penson Peace River, AB

Mr. Speaker, it sounds like this government is becoming just like the Conservative government before it, in being hooked on the GST. That is what is happening.

The capital tax discourages innovation and investment and the finance minister knows that it is a bad tax for Canada. His predecessor also knew it was a bad tax, but he chose to keep it going even though it was supposed to be a temporary tax to reduce the deficit.

Will the Minister of Finance do the right thing and axe the capital tax?

Taxation
Oral Question Period

2:20 p.m.

Oak Ridges
Ontario

Liberal

Bryon Wilfert Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Finance

Mr. Speaker, in case the member has been asleep, I remind him that tomorrow at four o'clock in here a budget will be delivered by the Minister of Finance.

Taxation
Oral Question Period

2:20 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

Charlie Penson Peace River, AB

Mr. Speaker, I thank him for that information. I guess if I am sleepy, he is dopey.

The former minister of finance increased spending on the federal bureaucracy, excluding defence, by $7.4 billion. On the other hand, health care and other transfers were only increased by $4.5 billion.

Why is this government spending more money on bureaucracy than it is on health care?

Taxation
Oral Question Period

2:20 p.m.

Oak Ridges
Ontario

Liberal

Bryon Wilfert Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Finance

Mr. Speaker, I realize the members on the other side are more used to being in Alice in Wonderland than they are in reality.

That is the party which on any given day asks us to raise taxes and says to spend more money, $3 billion, and on another day says to cut by $4 billion.

The reality is that, as the Prime Minister indicated today, we are reducing taxes. We are investing in Canadians. The record speaks for itself.

Iraq
Oral Question Period

February 17th, 2003 / 2:20 p.m.

Bloc

Gilles Duceppe Laurier—Sainte-Marie, QC

Mr. Speaker, 10 million people throughout the world, including 170,000 in Quebec, demonstrated to say no to war, yes to peace, yes to diplomacy and yes to the peaceful disarmament of Iraq.

Unfortunately, while citizens took to the streets to indicate their opposition to conflict, the Bush administration continued down its warpath. Colin Powell declared that the United States is ready to act with a coalition of the willing.

Will the Prime Minister finally listen to the public and clearly say that Canada will not take part in this coalition of the willing?

Iraq
Oral Question Period

2:20 p.m.

Saint-Maurice
Québec

Liberal

Jean Chrétien Prime Minister

Mr. Speaker, Canada's position has been firmly established. I explained it clearly on Thursday in Chicago. The United Nations must continue to do the work that is required under these circumstances.

I do believe a new resolution will be submitted to the Security Council this week or next. We will see what decision the Security Council makes. We will make up our mind once the Security Council's opinion is known and not before we have all the facts.

Iraq
Oral Question Period

2:20 p.m.

Bloc

Gilles Duceppe Laurier—Sainte-Marie, QC

Mr. Speaker, there are a few things we know. For instance, we know that the United States, through Ms. Rice, has said, “enough is enough”, and that it will move forward with or without the UN, with other countries that are willing.

Again, will the Prime Minister tell the U.S. clearly that we will never take part in such a coalition of the willing for the purpose of waging an illegitimate, illegal, and immoral war?

That is what I want an answer to.

Iraq
Oral Question Period

2:20 p.m.

Saint-Maurice
Québec

Liberal

Jean Chrétien Prime Minister

Mr. Speaker, resolution 1441 is the legal document that is currently before the Security Council. The inspectors are doing their work. Mr. Blix submitted a report last week and said the situation had improved.

We hope that diplomacy and the inspectors will continue to work. We, as Canadians, encourage everyone to respect the United Nations parameters, which have served the world so well until now.

Iraq
Oral Question Period

2:25 p.m.

Bloc

Francine Lalonde Mercier, QC

Mr. Speaker, on Friday the Minister of Foreign Affairs said that Canada would be making its own decision.

If the Canadian government wants to affirm its independence, is it prepared to tell our neighbour not to count on us as willing allies in an illegitimate war outside the framework of the United Nations?

Iraq
Oral Question Period

2:25 p.m.

Toronto Centre—Rosedale
Ontario

Liberal

Bill Graham Minister of Foreign Affairs

Mr. Speaker, I believe that the Prime Minister carried a message from Canada to Chicago last Thursday. He made it clear that not just Canada, but the United States and the world as a whole, are well served by remaining within the framework of resolution 1441, or in another words on the path chosen by the Security Council, which this government continues to support.

Iraq
Oral Question Period

2:25 p.m.

Bloc

Francine Lalonde Mercier, QC

Mr. Speaker, in reaction to the outpouring of public opinion in Italy, a spokesperson for the Italian government, which is very close to President Bush, has said that there is no longer any question of intervening in Iraq without the unequivocal support of the United Nations.

Is Canada going to take a clear stand on Iraq instead of trying to keep all doors open? The responses given so far leave all the doors still open. Is the government not making itself an object of international ridicule and weakening its influence?

Iraq
Oral Question Period

2:25 p.m.

Toronto Centre—Rosedale
Ontario

Liberal

Bill Graham Minister of Foreign Affairs

Mr. Speaker, in examining the facts, it is very much my impression that the Prime Minister of Italy is the one coming around to our Prime Minister's position, and not the opposite.

This is the outcome of this government's untiring efforts, which have consistently promoted one approach since the beginning of this crisis.

Iraq
Oral Question Period

2:25 p.m.

NDP

Bill Blaikie Winnipeg—Transcona, MB

Mr. Speaker, my question is for the Prime Minister.

The Prime Minister now has the benefit of the Blix report. He has the benefit of hearing from millions of Canadians and people all around the world standing for peace on Saturday.

I wonder if the Prime Minister could finally tell the House what exactly is the Canadian position. Will the Prime Minister tell the House today that Canada will not support a UN sponsored resolution authorizing a war on Iraq?