House of Commons Hansard #161 of the 39th Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was water.

Topics

Minister of National Defence
Oral Questions

2:15 p.m.

Liberal

Stéphane Dion Saint-Laurent—Cartierville, QC

Mr. Speaker, the defence minister misled the House about the Red Cross, detainees, the transfer agreement to the Afghan government, the cost of tanks and, worst of all, the funeral costs for our fallen soldiers.

Each time, he reminds Canadians that he is unfit for the job. His incompetence cannot be allowed to go unchecked any further. Will the Prime Minister demand his defence minister's immediate resignation?

Minister of National Defence
Oral Questions

2:15 p.m.

Calgary Southwest
Alberta

Conservative

Stephen Harper Prime Minister

Mr. Speaker, what the Leader of the Opposition says is completely untrue. In the case that he refers to, the Minister of National Defence has indeed and did indeed at the beginning instruct the Department of National Defence to pay all normal funeral costs, even if those exceed the guidelines put in place by the last government. To the extent that we have been able to find out, that has in fact been the case and that has been followed.

In the case raised yesterday, it is the case that some time ago expenses were paid above the limit. There are further expense claims and those are being looked into.

Minister of National Defence
Oral Questions

2:15 p.m.

Saint-Laurent—Cartierville
Québec

Liberal

Stéphane Dion Leader of the Opposition

Mr. Speaker, in their touching and brave press conference, Mr. Dinning said:

It is about the principle of the thing. It should be a no-brainer: Your sons or daughters give their lives for Canada and we shouldn't be penny-pinching over whether we're going to pay for funeral expenses.

That is indisputable.

Since the Prime Minister does not have the courage to ask him to do the right thing, will the defence minister do it on his own and step aside?

Minister of National Defence
Oral Questions

2:20 p.m.

Calgary Southwest
Alberta

Conservative

Stephen Harper Prime Minister

Once again, Mr. Speaker, in the case raised and in all cases the deaths of Canadian Forces members are terribly tragic events for this country and obviously we feel for their families. The fact of the matter, as I said, is that already some time ago expenses exceeding the limit had been approved. There are further expense requests and those will be dealt with expeditiously.

Minister of National Defence
Oral Questions

2:20 p.m.

Saint-Laurent—Cartierville
Québec

Liberal

Stéphane Dion Leader of the Opposition

Mr. Speaker, we have had enough. This has gone on long enough. The Minister of National Defence has misled this House too many times. He has shown how incompetent he is too many times.

Since the Prime Minister does not have the courage to ask him to do the honourable thing, will the Minister of National Defence do the honourable thing himself and resign?

Minister of National Defence
Oral Questions

2:20 p.m.

Calgary Southwest
Alberta

Conservative

Stephen Harper Prime Minister

Mr. Speaker, once again, the Minister of National Defence is a veteran of the Canadian Forces. He has served this country courageously in uniform for 32 years. When the Leader of the Opposition is able to stand in uniform and serve his country, then I will care about his opinion of the performance of the Minister of National Defence.

Government Policies
Oral Questions

May 31st, 2007 / 2:20 p.m.

Liberal

Michael Ignatieff Etobicoke—Lakeshore, ON

Mr. Speaker, I cannot remember the Prime Minister's service record.

On Sunday, the Minister of Foreign Affairs foolishly called for the Russians to return to Afghanistan. He is the one responsible for our diplomacy.

On Tuesday, the Minister of International Cooperation declared that the Afghan people do not eat flour. She is the woman responsible for development.

This week, the Minister of National Defence has stumbled from one mistake to the other. He is the man responsible for defence.

Is it not time that the Prime Minister brought this triple crown of incompetence to an end?

Government Policies
Oral Questions

2:20 p.m.

Calgary Southwest
Alberta

Conservative

Stephen Harper Prime Minister

Mr. Speaker, I will just say that it is true I have never served in the armed forces. I consider that an experience that I have missed in my life, but I can say that I have always lived and worked and paid my taxes in this country.

Government Policies
Oral Questions

2:20 p.m.

Liberal

Michael Ignatieff Etobicoke—Lakeshore, ON

Mr. Speaker--

Government Policies
Oral Questions

2:20 p.m.

Some hon. members

Oh, oh!

Government Policies
Oral Questions

2:20 p.m.

Liberal

The Speaker Peter Milliken

Order, please. We seem to be having a lot of noise today. I would urge hon. members to restrain themselves. The hon. member for Etobicoke—Lakeshore has the floor.

Government Policies
Oral Questions

2:20 p.m.

Liberal

Michael Ignatieff Etobicoke—Lakeshore, ON

Mr. Speaker, we can all play these silly games about who is the better Canadian. If they seriously believe that someone who has contributed to this country outside and come back to Canada is less of a Canadian, they should get up and say that to two million Canadians who live and work overseas.

Government Policies
Oral Questions

2:20 p.m.

Liberal

The Speaker Peter Milliken

The hon. member's time has expired. The hon. member for Laurier—Sainte-Marie.

Option Canada
Oral Questions

2:20 p.m.

Bloc

Gilles Duceppe Laurier—Sainte-Marie, QC

Mr. Speaker, yesterday the Prime Minister stated the following in the House in connection with Option Canada: “the reality is that everything has been investigated”. Yet Justice Grenier has, in fact, said that he did not have jurisdiction to examine federal expenses, such as the love-in, within his mandate to investigate Option Canada.

If everything has been investigated, can the Prime Minister tell us who financed the love-in and how much it cost? Justice Grenier and his team of forensic accountants do not even know this themselves. But the Prime Minister has investigated and he knows. Could he tell us?

Option Canada
Oral Questions

2:20 p.m.

Calgary Southwest
Alberta

Conservative

Stephen Harper Prime Minister

Mr. Speaker, the Auditor General is responsible for examining federal expenses. To date, the Government of Canada has followed through on all of the Auditor General's findings and those of the Gomery commission and the inquiry by Mr. Paillé. Once again, everything has been investigated or is currently being investigated.