House of Commons Hansard #90 of the 39th Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was environment.

Topics

Status of Women
Oral Questions

2:15 p.m.

Calgary Southwest
Alberta

Conservative

Stephen Harper Prime Minister

Mr. Speaker, I would like to begin by congratulating the new Leader of the Opposition on his election as leader of his party, a victory that I thought was well earned. I have been a resident of Stornoway myself. I hope he enjoys Stornoway and I hope he is happy there for a very long time.

While I am on my feet, I would also like to take the opportunity, on behalf of my party and I think the whole House, to thank the member for Toronto Centre for his performance as Leader of the Opposition over the past few months. He conducted himself with great determination, dignity and intelligence and, in spite of the chant, it is far to late to enter the race now.

In terms of the question, the government is reallocating money for women's programming from bureaucracy to programming directly for women. I can assure all members of the House that when the government reallocates money, it does so to make it more effective for ordinary people, not to flow it into party coffers.

Judicial Appointments
Oral Questions

2:20 p.m.

Saint-Laurent—Cartierville
Québec

Liberal

Stéphane Dion Leader of the Opposition

Mr. Speaker, we see the cuts but we do not see the reallocation.

Still on the subject of rights, the Prime Minister has criticized our judges, abolished the court challenges program, confused the roles of the police and the judiciary and is now inviting the House to re-open the debate on civil marriage for no reason. Is this because his party's radical right wing dictates his agenda?

Judicial Appointments
Oral Questions

2:20 p.m.

Calgary Southwest
Alberta

Conservative

Stephen Harper Prime Minister

Mr. Speaker, the Leader of the Opposition raised a number of issues, including the judicial appointment process. We think that full public consultation is essential, even for judicial appointments. We have to hear what stakeholders, such as victims and the police, have to say. I realize that the Liberal Party's policy is to consult only with lawyers and criminals, but we think that the legal system should work for everyone.

Judicial Appointments
Oral Questions

2:20 p.m.

Saint-Laurent—Cartierville
Québec

Liberal

Stéphane Dion Leader of the Opposition

Mr. Speaker, everyone criticized the Prime Minister's intention to confuse the roles of the police and the judiciary like that.

The provincial courts have spoken. The Supreme Court of Canada has spoken. The Parliament of Canada has spoken. Yet, the Prime Minister still thinks he can pick and choose rights.

Why does he want to be the first Prime Minister in Canadian history to override the charter?

Judicial Appointments
Oral Questions

2:20 p.m.

Calgary Southwest
Alberta

Conservative

Stephen Harper Prime Minister

Mr. Speaker, in the last election we promised Canadians a genuinely free vote on the issue in the House of Commons. My party, including the cabinet of my party, will vote freely on this issue.

I know that the new Leader of the Opposition has said he will not allow a free vote by his caucus members. I hope that proves not to be the case because I think the rights of members of Parliament are some of the most important rights we have in this country.

Let me go back to what I said earlier in French. It is essential that when we put people on the bench, we do a full public consultation. That includes people who protect Canadian citizens, like the police. They have every right to be consulted.

Status of Women
Oral Questions

December 4th, 2006 / 2:20 p.m.

Liberal

Michael Ignatieff Etobicoke—Lakeshore, ON

Mr. Speaker, a minute ago the Prime Minister referred to reallocating funds. We were speaking in respect of the Status of Women.

I think the House would want to know what specific programs, what specific commitments he has made, or is that reallocation simply another paraphrase for a cut?

Status of Women
Oral Questions

2:20 p.m.

Durham
Ontario

Conservative

Bev Oda Minister of Canadian Heritage and Status of Women

Mr. Speaker, we will be clear. The entire amount of $5 million will be available to organizations in every community across the country to help women directly in their communities. In fact, we know that these organizations that work on a day to day basis with women will know their needs, not a bureaucracy in Ottawa.

Government Programs
Oral Questions

2:20 p.m.

Liberal

Michael Ignatieff Etobicoke—Lakeshore, ON

Mr. Speaker, this minority government eliminated the court challenges program, cut Status of Women Canada's budget and cut literacy programs.

When will it understand that a government should bring people together rather than exclude them?

Government Programs
Oral Questions

2:25 p.m.

Haldimand—Norfolk
Ontario

Conservative

Diane Finley Minister of Human Resources and Social Development

Mr. Speaker, Canadians voted this time for a responsible government, one that would spend their money wisely on direct programs for Canadians, not on programs of the past. That is why we are not cutting programs. We are providing savings by eliminating programs that were not delivering real results for the money. We are putting the money into services that do.

Afghanistan
Oral Questions

2:25 p.m.

Bloc

Gilles Duceppe Laurier—Sainte-Marie, QC

Mr. Speaker, first, I would like to congratulate the new leader of the Liberal Party, who won a decisive victory on the weekend after running a good campaign. Our visions differ as to the future of Quebec, but the debate will only be clearer as a result.

That said, last week, the Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Foreign Affairs stated, “Any deployment anywhere will be brought in front of the House of Commons”. Yet, at a NATO meeting the Prime Minister attended, the member countries promised that NATO troops would remain in Afghanistan as long as is needed to bring peace to that country.

Did the Prime Minister inform NATO that Canada will be unable to continue its mission in Afghanistan beyond February 2009, unless it has the approval of the House of Commons?

Afghanistan
Oral Questions

2:25 p.m.

Calgary Southwest
Alberta

Conservative

Stephen Harper Prime Minister

Mr. Speaker, we had a vote in the House of Commons this year to extend the mission of our forces in Afghanistan until 2009.

I also mentioned that we intended to inform the House of Commons of our progress until 2009 and that we would consult the House again on the next steps.

Afghanistan
Oral Questions

2:25 p.m.

Bloc

Gilles Duceppe Laurier—Sainte-Marie, QC

Mr. Speaker, the question was whether the Prime Minister had informed NATO of the possible decision by the House of Commons.

On his return, the Prime Minister proclaimed that the NATO summit had been a success. However, very few countries made a firm commitment to increase their presence in Afghanistan, as the Prime Minister had requested.

Under the circumstances, will the Prime Minister admit that it is very important that he inform NATO and the allied countries that Canadian troops could be withdrawn in February 2009?

Afghanistan
Oral Questions

2:25 p.m.

Calgary Southwest
Alberta

Conservative

Stephen Harper Prime Minister

Mr. Speaker, additional troops have been sent in by a number of countries, especially countries with which we are working in partnership in southern Afghanistan, such as Estonia, Romania, the United States, Great Britain and the Netherlands.

Obviously, we are consulting constantly with our allies, and we intend to work together to achieve a successful outcome in Afghanistan.

Foreign Affairs
Oral Questions

2:25 p.m.

Bloc

Caroline St-Hilaire Longueuil—Pierre-Boucher, QC

Mr. Speaker, the Prime Minister recently met with his NATO partners and, unfortunately, he did not push hard enough on the issue of finding some sort of balance between military interventions and humanitarian efforts.

How could the Prime Minister overlook this important aspect of the mission in Afghanistan, an aspect that would allow us to refocus Canada's interventions in Afghanistan?

Foreign Affairs
Oral Questions

2:25 p.m.

Central Nova
Nova Scotia

Conservative

Peter MacKay Minister of Foreign Affairs and Minister of the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency

Mr. Speaker, on the contrary, we had many discussions with our allies concerning reconstruction and humanitarian aid. Canada still intends to find ways to help the people of Afghanistan and to increase participation in all the programs to bring assistance to the population.