House of Commons Hansard #98 of the 38th Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was budget.

Topics

Justice
Statements By Members

May 13th, 2005 / 11:15 a.m.

Liberal

Michael John Savage Dartmouth—Cole Harbour, NS

Mr. Speaker, the people of Dartmouth--Cole Harbour, like all Canadians, are concerned about crime, especially after a spate of swarmings and other offences.

Our government recognizes that Canadians see youth crime in particular as an important issue. Canadians have the right to feel safe and secure in their homes and communities. They also want a fair youth justice system that seeks constructive responses to youth crime.

Our youth justice system must reinforce social values and also give youth every opportunity to become productive, responsible citizens, while understanding their responsibility to society.

We also need to ensure that the system commands respect, fosters values, such as accountability and responsibility, and makes it clear that criminal behaviour will lead to meaningful consequence.

All members of this House should continue to listen to the concerns of their constituents so that as we move forward we can ensure that our laws are consistent with our community values and provide meaningful deterrent and punishment for those who choose to offend.

Government of Canada
Statements By Members

11:15 a.m.

Conservative

Rona Ambrose Edmonton—Spruce Grove, AB

Mr. Speaker, in 1838 Lord Durham, on commission from Queen Victoria, wrote that in order to maintain stability in the Canadian colonies, the government must be held accountable to the people who elect it by retaining the confidence of the House. This principle of responsible government is the democratic foundation upon which this country was founded.

The Prime Minister is no longer governing with the consent of the governed, which is the traditional test of legitimacy according to our Constitution. His attempts to delay another confidence motion mocks our democracy, smacks of desperation and underlies the lack of legitimacy of his government.

Political legitimacy is delegated in the highest regard to this House by the citizens of this country. To retain any authority to govern that he might once have had, the Prime Minister must table a confidence motion that can be voted upon by all representatives of the people, not just at his own convenience.

Natural Resources
Statements By Members

11:15 a.m.

Liberal

Bill Matthews Random—Burin—St. George's, NL

Mr. Speaker, I rise today on an issue of critical importance to my province of Newfoundland and Labrador.

On January 28 the Prime Minister delivered on his promise to make Newfoundland and Labrador the main beneficiary of our offshore oil and gas. It is a deal worth more than $2 billion to our province.

The hon. members for St. John's East and St. John's South--Mount Pearl promised to support the Atlantic accord, even if it meant breaking ranks with their party. In a recent article in the St. John's Telegram , the member for St. John's South--Mount Pearl stated:

You cannot ever turn your back on your province on an important issue like this, even if it meant your party says, tough stuff, you have to sit in the last seat, last row.

Today, the Atlantic accord is in serious jeopardy as a result of the new partnership of the Conservatives and the Bloc, the separatist party.

The hon. members opposite from Newfoundland and Labrador promised to support the deal and now they are going back on their word. This is a gigantic flip-flop, the likes of which people in our province have never seen before.

Democratic Reform
Statements By Members

11:15 a.m.

NDP

Ed Broadbent Ottawa Centre, ON

Mr. Speaker, whereas the large majority of the world's democracies have some form of proportional representation, and whereas leading members of the Commonwealth including Scotland, Ireland, Wales, New Zealand and Australia have also embodied some form of PR, and whereas electoral systems that include PR have much better representation of women and visible minorities as well as better regional representation of caucuses, we must resolve that Canada catch up with democratic reform.

Specifically, the House of Commons committee considering electoral reform next week must recommend a reform process with a completion date by the end of the year.

It is the last chance for this committee to meet its obligation to establish a process that involves a form of citizen engagement and parliamentarians, and that will lead to an electoral system that embodies individual constituencies and proportional representation.

Government of Canada
Statements By Members

11:15 a.m.

Conservative

Dave Batters Palliser, SK

Mr. Speaker, Canada is seen as a beacon of democracy across the globe. Sadly this beacon has started to flicker. As Wednesday's Globe and Mail editorial stated:

[The] Liberal government has lost the confidence of the House of Commons. The Liberals may dance on the head of a pin to deny that fact...But the inescapable reality is that a majority of voting MPs in the Commons have served notice that they have no confidence in the sitting government and wish an election

The Liberal government has lost the moral, financial and now the constitutional authority to govern. It is imperative that we put this matter to the people as soon as possible, on Monday. A government should never run from the people. As the official opposition we can no longer support a government which has shown to be corrupt, fiscally irresponsible and blatantly undemocratic.

We in the Conservative Party of Canada stand ready to give Canadians the good, honest government they deserve. Canadians have had enough and they want us to stand up for Canada.

Prime Minister
Statements By Members

11:20 a.m.

Bloc

Pierre Paquette Joliette, QC

Mr. Speaker, the events of recent days have brought to mind something written by Victor Hugo on the coup d'état by Louis Bonaparte, whom he called Napoléon-le-petit, or Little Napoleon. I will read an excerpt from it:

There are a number of descendants of Machiavelli, and Louis Bonaparte is one of them. He announces an outrageous action, then indignantly disavows it, swears on everything that is sacred, declares himself an upright man, and then, just as people start to be reassured and to find the announcement nothing but a comical memory, he carries it out. He used that approach for the coup d'état, and for the decrees...That is his approach; he uses it and finds it good. It suits him, but he will have to face the judgment of history.

Those in his inner circle hear from his lips a plan that seems, not immoral, as we do not scrutinize it to that extent, but thoughtless and dangerous, even to him. We raise objections; he listens without comment; sometimes he backs down for two or three days, but then he resumes his plan and does as he pleases.

Imagine what Victor Hugo would have written about the unspeakable actions of the Prime Minister.

Government of Canada
Statements By Members

11:20 a.m.

Conservative

John Reynolds West Vancouver—Sunshine Coast, BC

Mr. Speaker, it is apparent to all but a few Liberals that the government has lost the confidence of the House and it is not just the confidence of the House that has been lost by the government. Letters to the editor and callers to talk shows indicate that even Liberal supporters have lost confidence and are tearing up their membership cards. When that happens, it means the governing party has lost the confidence of the country. It is time the government bowed to the will of the House and the will of the people, and scheduled a vote of confidence.

It should be scheduled for Monday, so this silly charade can end. It should be scheduled for Monday, before the Prime Minister spends the country into bankruptcy. It should be scheduled for Monday, so he is forced to return from his “If you will be my friend, I will give you money” tour. It should be scheduled for Monday, so that all hon. members could be here to inform him one way or the other of their confidence in his right and ability to continue governing.

It should be scheduled for Monday, so the Canadian people can decide whether any Liberals should be allowed the privilege of sitting in this noble institution. It should be scheduled for Monday, for the sake of democracy and for the sake of decency.

Justice
Statements By Members

11:20 a.m.

Liberal

Russ Powers Ancaster—Dundas—Flamborough—Westdale, ON

Mr. Speaker, after studying the DNA identification act for more than six months, the House Standing Committee on Justice, Human Rights, Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness gave clause by clause approval on Tuesday of this week.

On that same day the Conservative Party and its ally, the Bloc, argued that the House should be dissolved, which would have killed Bill C-13 before the committee even had a chance to issue its report.

The justice committee heard from 48 witnesses on Bill C-13. The input of these groups and of the individual Canadians who appeared before the committee assisted all parties on the committee to bring forward the best possible DNA identification laws in order to protect Canadians from criminals.

Yet, the leader of the official opposition and his partner, the Bloc leader, were willing to kill the DNA bill because they were more interested in their own political fortunes than the safety of Canadians. I simply say, shame.

Government of Canada
Oral Question Period

11:20 a.m.

Conservative

Peter MacKay Central Nova, NS

Mr. Speaker, I have a news flash for the member from Ancaster. That item just passed through the House.

The Liberal government has now lost six clearly defined votes which demonstrates that it has lost the confidence and control of the House. The late Liberal senator and constitutional expert Eugene Forsey said that a government consistently subject to defeat on its legislation or control in the House will be unable to carry through the Queen's business or will be compromised in its honour and should either resign or ask for dissolution, and that the matter should be promptly tested by a vote of confidence.

The Prime Minister refuses to do the honourable thing. Will he at least agree to put a clear vote of confidence before the House on Monday?

Government of Canada
Oral Question Period

11:20 a.m.

Hamilton East—Stoney Creek
Ontario

Liberal

Tony Valeri Leader of the Government in the House of Commons

Mr. Speaker, the official opposition is frankly misunderstanding a procedural motion for a confidence motion.

Constitutional experts have said in fact that there is no constitutional crisis. Patrick Monahan today said that the situation would be a crisis only if the government refused to have a confidence vote.

I tried to schedule that confidence vote for next Thursday. The official opposition and the separatist party that want to have a confidence vote in the House have refused to allow the House to have that vote on Thursday.

Government of Canada
Oral Question Period

11:20 a.m.

Conservative

Peter MacKay Central Nova, NS

Mr. Speaker, I say to the hon. government House leader that the crisis, like the corruption, is deeply rooted in the Liberal Party of Canada.

Canadians across the country are disgusted by the corruption in the government. The Prime Minister has a death grip on the doors of 24 Sussex.

Will the Prime Minister agree to hold a vote in this House on Monday on the future of his government?

Government of Canada
Oral Question Period

11:25 a.m.

Hamilton East—Stoney Creek
Ontario

Liberal

Tony Valeri Leader of the Government in the House of Commons

Mr. Speaker, we will not get into signatures on paper, by the way, for the purposes of the hon. member.

We have set forward a reasonable date for a confidence vote. There is an opportunity to continue that debate. Bill C-48 is in the House today and it is an important piece of legislation.

Having the vote on Thursday also respects the investments made by both the people and governments of Alberta and Saskatchewan with respect to the Queen's visit. May I also suggest that the hon. member has no concern for the people of Alberta and Saskatchewan, who made that investment.

The Budget
Oral Question Period

11:25 a.m.

Conservative

Peter MacKay Central Nova, NS

Mr. Speaker, today the Liberal Party once again rejected the request from the Conservative Party, supported by all opposition parties, to split the budget bill and remove the Atlantic accord. To do so would allow the money to flow to those provinces immediately, as promised.

The Liberal-NDP budget has been chopped up. Items have been dropped and added. There have been numerous examples of items passed through the House at all stages, like the DNA bill and support for veterans. The 2004 budget just passed today.

Will the government agree to remove the Atlantic accord from the budget, present it to the House at all stages, and pass it through the House immediately?

The Budget
Oral Question Period

11:25 a.m.

Hamilton East—Stoney Creek
Ontario

Liberal

Tony Valeri Leader of the Government in the House of Commons

Mr. Speaker, I find it hard to take coming from a party that once denounced Atlantic Canada for possessing a culture of defeat.

The Leader of the Opposition and his party fully understand that their friends, the separatist Bloc members, do not support these accords. If in fact the Conservatives wanted to assist Atlantic Canadians they would support the budget. The premier of Newfoundland said:

I'd like to see the budget passed. I can't take partisan positions on these issues. I've got to do what's in the best interests of the people of the province.

Vote for the budget and pass the Atlantic accord.

Government of Canada
Oral Question Period

11:25 a.m.

Conservative

Jay Hill Prince George—Peace River, BC

Mr. Speaker, it is now abundantly clear that the culture of defeat is coming from the Liberal Party of Canada. It is also abundantly clear that the Liberal government has lost the confidence of the House of Commons.

Renowned constitutional expert Professor Andrew Heard said:

It should not matter what procedural context a vote of confidence occurs in. The fundamental basis of a confidence vote is that the elected members of the legislature express their collective view of the government.

That view was expressed several times this past week. The government has lost the confidence of the House. If the government has any respect for the Constitution, will it do the right thing and call--