House of Commons Hansard #31 of the 37th Parliament, 3rd Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was year.

Topics

Sponsorship Program
Oral Question Period

2:40 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

Leon Benoit Lakeland, AB

Mr. Speaker, the Prime Minister is hiding from this question. Why is he hiding from this question?

He said clearly that there is no connection between ministers of his cabinet and the sponsorship issue. Yet when I ask a straightforward question regarding that relationship, he refuses to answer.

I will ask the question again. Was the Prime Minister ever advised of a sponsorship relationship between Pierre Tremblay and the current Privy Council president?

Sponsorship Program
Oral Question Period

2:40 p.m.

Brossard—La Prairie
Québec

Liberal

Jacques Saada Leader of the Government in the House of Commons and Minister responsible for Democratic Reform

Mr. Speaker, just in case there was a language problem, I want to repeat in French something I only said twice in English. The minister did speak with Mr. Tremblay—he said so himself—when he was responsible for amateur sport. He was doing his job. What is wrong with that?

I will tell you what is wrong with that. It is all in the minds of those who think that constantly repeating falsehoods will somehow make them true. This is not true; these are still falsehoods.

Sponsorship Program
Oral Question Period

2:45 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

Charlie Penson Peace River, AB

Mr. Speaker, it is painfully obvious that the Prime Minister needs to stand in his place today and answer one question. The question is, when the Prime Minister shuffled the President of the Privy Council into cabinet, was he informed of the relationship between the President of the Privy Council and Pierre Tremblay?

Sponsorship Program
Oral Question Period

2:45 p.m.

Brossard—La Prairie
Québec

Liberal

Jacques Saada Leader of the Government in the House of Commons and Minister responsible for Democratic Reform

Mr. Speaker, I am sure if the opposition cared to put questions on the budget, on the issue of globalization, on matters of health, the Prime Minister would be glad to answer. However in this kind of questioning, nobody has got to go that low.

Sponsorship Program
Oral Question Period

2:45 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

Charlie Penson Peace River, AB

Mr. Speaker, the Prime Minister seems to have lost his voice at very convenient times today. He needs to stand up and answer the question. There is $100 million of Canadian taxpayers' dollars missing out of the budget.

When the Prime Minister shuffled the President of the Privy Council into cabinet, was he informed of the relationship between the President of the Privy Council and Pierre Tremblay?

Sponsorship Program
Oral Question Period

2:45 p.m.

LaSalle—Émard
Québec

Liberal

Paul Martin Prime Minister

Mr. Speaker, there is no news in the hon. member misinterpreting what was said. The fact is I interviewed all of the ministers. I asked them at the cabinet table altogether whether in fact they had any knowledge of wrongdoing. They all said no.

The minister himself, as has been repeated by the House leader, stood up in the House and said that as minister of sport he had dealings with the public servant who was involved in matters involving his portfolio. Opposition members can ask the question 25 times, but that happens to be the fact.

St. Lawrence Seaway
Oral Question Period

March 29th, 2004 / 2:45 p.m.

Bloc

Bernard Bigras Rosemont—Petite-Patrie, QC

Mr. Speaker, the president of the St. Lawrence Seaway Management Corporation, Richard Corfe, is publicly stating that the government is seriously considering enlarging the St. Lawrence Seaway, although the Minister of Transport says otherwise.

Can the government tell us whose version is the right one, that of the minister or that of the president of the St. Lawrence Seaway Management Corporation?

St. Lawrence Seaway
Oral Question Period

2:45 p.m.

Stoney Creek
Ontario

Liberal

Tony Valeri Minister of Transport

Mr. Speaker, I responded to the hon. member's question in committee.

I can reiterate in the House that the government has no intention of expanding or deepening the seaway. We are participating in a study that has to do with the future of the seaway, including environmental engineering and economic aspects that deal with the ongoing maintenance needs of the seaway, not the expansion nor the deepening of the seaway.

St. Lawrence Seaway
Oral Question Period

2:45 p.m.

Bloc

Bernard Bigras Rosemont—Petite-Patrie, QC

Mr. Speaker, the president of the St. Lawrence Seaway Management Corporation is basing his version on, among other things, a study by the US Army Corps of Engineers, which is in favour of enlarging the St. Lawrence Seaway.

If Richard Corfe's version is incorrect, what is the minister waiting for to set him straight?

St. Lawrence Seaway
Oral Question Period

2:45 p.m.

Stoney Creek
Ontario

Liberal

Tony Valeri Minister of Transport

Mr. Speaker, as I have just said, we have no intention of deepening or widening the seaway.

Two studies are ongoing. We are participating in one study which deals with the ongoing maintenance of the seaway. We are participating in that study because the seaway is an integral component of the transportation system that deals with trade, which is critical to the future economic prosperity of the country.

Sponsorship Program
Oral Question Period

2:45 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

Gerry Ritz Battlefords—Lloydminster, SK

Mr. Speaker, the evidence is mounting in the public accounts committee. The Prime Minister says that he screened the ministers before he put them into their cabinet position.

I would like to know this from the Prime Minister. When was he advised of the connection between the President of the Privy Council and Pierre Tremblay?

Sponsorship Program
Oral Question Period

2:45 p.m.

Brossard—La Prairie
Québec

Liberal

Jacques Saada Leader of the Government in the House of Commons and Minister responsible for Democratic Reform

Mr. Speaker, the next time I come into the House I will bring with me a tape recorder to record my answers and repeat them exactly.

When a member is a minister of the crown, the minister has a responsibility to assume. The minister in question was secretary of state for amateur sport, supported by the way by all those people who came to him to ask for help. He did his job. He did what he had to do as a minister.

Are they saying that as a minister he should abdicate his responsibility?

Sponsorship Program
Oral Question Period

2:45 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

Gerry Ritz Battlefords—Lloydminster, SK

Mr. Speaker, that is a nice sidebar argument. However, it goes a long way from the actual question. We found out that the President of the Privy Council in his former role was not above stretching the truth a bit when talking about staying with Claude Boulay.

The Prime Minister said that he screened all those ministers before he put them into place. I guess that screen had some pretty big holes in it.

Will the Prime Minister now take a second look at this President of the Privy Council and maybe bring him down a peg or two?

Sponsorship Program
Oral Question Period

2:50 p.m.

Brossard—La Prairie
Québec

Liberal

Jacques Saada Leader of the Government in the House of Commons and Minister responsible for Democratic Reform

Mr. Speaker, in French we would say “idem”. In English I suppose there is an expression similar to this which means exactly the same answer as before.

Airline Industry
Oral Question Period

2:50 p.m.

Liberal

Christian Jobin Lévis-Et-Chutes-De-La-Chaudière, QC

Mr. Speaker, over the past few months, many members of this House and I have been approached by lobby groups about merging pilot seniority lists from Air Canada and Canadian Airlines International.

Will the Minister of Labour explain to this House what stage the merger process has reached and what her role is in this merger?