House of Commons Hansard #116 of the 39th Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was immigrants.

Topics

Justice
Oral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Okanagan—Coquihalla
B.C.

Conservative

Stockwell Day Minister of Public Safety

Mr. Speaker, I believe our justice system is among the fairest in the world. When it comes to the security of our citizens, it is in fact the justice system, the Supreme Court itself, which has said that this particular constitutional provision is constitutional, and that Canadians can be protected by having this in place.

The Liberals should not try and deflect from the main question. They should not try to divert from the fact that their leader is ignoring all the advice on this, putting Canadians in peril, and impeding this investigation. I wish he were here today to hear it instead of sending a look-alike.

Justice
Oral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Liberal

Ken Dryden York Centre, ON

Mr. Speaker, what we saw yesterday was a Prime Minister behaving as if there are no checks and balances. If the politics is right, do it. It does not matter what or who gets run over along the way. No internal compass, nothing, no one to tell him otherwise. The purpose of politics is politics.

We have to be able to trust the person who has the power. The Prime Minister divides, one is a friend or is not, one is in or is out, and is governing to the 37% of the people who elected him.

We have to trust the person who has the power. I do not. Tell me, tell Canadians why we should?

Justice
Oral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Okanagan—Coquihalla
B.C.

Conservative

Stockwell Day Minister of Public Safety

Mr. Speaker, he is all over the ice with that question. I have no idea where he is coming from.

However, in terms of trusting the power, we have a system of balanced power in this country and that is why in terms of concerns about our security forces there is a balance to the things that our security forces would like to do. One of those checks and balances is the Supreme Court.

The Supreme Court, along with the Senate today, along with the former Liberal government, along with former Liberal prime ministers, and almost everybody that the present Liberal leader knows is saying to leave these protective provisions in place. That is a balance of power and the member is rejecting it.

Judicial Appointments
Oral Questions

February 22nd, 2007 / 2:50 p.m.

Liberal

Irwin Cotler Mount Royal, QC

Mr. Speaker, the independence of the judiciary is not only a foundational, constitutional principle, it is a fundamental constitutional right of all Canadians.

Why is the government ignoring and disregarding the Constitution and the rights of all Canadians? Why is it ignoring the very process put in place by a former Conservative government in 1988 to protect these rights? Why is it ignoring the respected voices of the bench, bar, academe and the like?

I am asking the question, why is the government undermining not only the independence of the judiciary but the rights of all Canadians? I repeat, all Canadians.

Judicial Appointments
Oral Questions

2:55 p.m.

Niagara Falls
Ontario

Conservative

Rob Nicholson Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada

Mr. Speaker, nothing could be further from the truth. The judicial advisory committees were instituted by a previous Conservative government in 1988. That government changed it again around 1991. The committee has been altered on two occasions by the Liberal Party itself.

This is a change. I think it is a reasonable one. Adding a police officer has got the Liberals very upset as we can see, but I think they are wrong on this. When they see the operation of the judicial advisory committees, they generally operate on a consensus in any case, it will work very well.

Judicial Appointments
Oral Questions

2:55 p.m.

Liberal

Irwin Cotler Mount Royal, QC

Mr. Speaker, evasion and false countercharges are unbecoming of the Minister of Justice and unbecoming of the government.

The minister of justice in any government has a duty to protect the Constitution, a duty to protect the independence of the judiciary, and a duty to protect the rights of all Canadians.

Will the government perform this duty or demean its responsibilities?

Judicial Appointments
Oral Questions

2:55 p.m.

Niagara Falls
Ontario

Conservative

Rob Nicholson Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada

Mr. Speaker, the justice minister has the obligation to protect the Constitution, not change it, as I think I am hearing from the hon. member.

While I am on my feet, this former justice minister knows the importance of the anti-terrorism measures that are now before Parliament. He supported them. I know his colleagues supported them, and I would ask for his help to get these past his colleagues.

The Environment
Oral Questions

2:55 p.m.

Bloc

Bernard Bigras Rosemont—La Petite-Patrie, QC

Mr. Speaker, in Montreal yesterday, Al Gore did not beat around the bush in recommending that the Canadian government not follow the example of the United States when it comes to combating climate change, since their record is one of the worst in the world.

Will the Minister of the Environment hear the urgent appeals from people whose credibility is above reproach and who are warning him against copying the United States, because that is a scenario that would lead directly to failure?

The Environment
Oral Questions

2:55 p.m.

Ottawa West—Nepean
Ontario

Conservative

John Baird Minister of the Environment

Mr. Speaker, yes.

The Environment
Oral Questions

2:55 p.m.

Bloc

Bernard Bigras Rosemont—La Petite-Patrie, QC

Mr. Speaker, not only has the government been very accommodating to the oil companies, but, according to Al Gore, it is indulging the automobile industry by doing less, in matters of fuel efficient vehicles, than Japan and, worse yet, less than China.

Instead of railing about the inaction of the Liberals, what is the Minister of the Environment waiting for to force the automobile industry to become more fuel efficient?

The Environment
Oral Questions

2:55 p.m.

Ottawa West—Nepean
Ontario

Conservative

John Baird Minister of the Environment

Mr. Speaker, we said very clearly last October that we were ready to regulate the automobile industry. Our goal is to have stricter regulations. We currently have voluntary measures. That is not acceptable for this government. Last week, we met with industry leaders. We were very clear. Over the next few weeks or months, we are going to have new regulations in order to have a better environment here in Canada.

Canadian Wheat Board
Oral Questions

2:55 p.m.

Liberal

Wayne Easter Malpeque, PE

Mr. Speaker, yesterday we witnessed the tactics of the Prime Minister in attacking individual integrity, but it is far worse.

I have a copy of the minister's barley ballot and the government is violating the very tenet of a democratic society: the right to a secret ballot.

Why has the minister allowed traceable numbers on the ballot itself? Is the reason to hunt down farmers who would vote contrary to the Prime Minister's ideological agenda? Is it his intention to audit certain farmers, or is it just to threaten and intimidate those who disagree with the Prime Minister?

Canadian Wheat Board
Oral Questions

2:55 p.m.

Chilliwack—Fraser Canyon
B.C.

Conservative

Chuck Strahl Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food and Minister for the Canadian Wheat Board

Mr. Speaker, I think that the hon. member has his tinfoil cap well removed today.

We have a clear question that we put to Canadian barley farmers. We asked them if they wanted the status quo; if they wanted to abolish the board, which is not our preferred choice; or if they wanted to have more choice, including the choice to sell to the Canadian Wheat Board.

We have given all that information to KPMG, an independent auditor. The independent auditor is running the campaign. All the information is with that firm. It is not with me. It is not with the government. If the hon. member wants to call into question the integrity of KPMG, I guess that is what he is doing.

Canadian Wheat Board
Oral Questions

2:55 p.m.

Conservative

Merv Tweed Brandon—Souris, MB

Mr. Speaker, for years western Canadian grain farmers have been asking for greater openness at the Canadian Wheat Board. Because of the current monopoly, producers have no choice but to sell their grain to the board, accept whatever returns the board gives, hope this money is spent wisely and returns are maximized.

Could the Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food tell the House when access to information for the Canadian Wheat Board will come into force and what will it mean to western farmers?

Canadian Wheat Board
Oral Questions

3 p.m.

Chilliwack—Fraser Canyon
B.C.

Conservative

Chuck Strahl Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food and Minister for the Canadian Wheat Board

Mr. Speaker, I am pleased to hear, as I know the member and thousands of Canadian farmers are, that as of April 1 the Access to Information Act will cover the Canadian Wheat Board. This is good news for farmers.

I want to thank the President of the Treasury Board and his predecessor for the good work on this.

I believe it is only right that farmers know how their money is being used. Administrative costs in that organization amount to $70 million a year. Farmers deserve the highest level of transparency on that.

For the first time ever, despite the efforts of the member for Wascana and the member for Malpeque to stop this, farmers finally are going get to know what is going on at the Board.