House of Commons Hansard #94 of the 39th Parliament, 2nd Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was first.

Topics

Memorial Cup
Statements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Liberal

Karen Redman Kitchener Centre, ON

Mr. Speaker, Canada's junior hockey fans are turning their attention to Kitchener for the Canadian Hockey League's 2008 Memorial Cup.

The 90th edition of the MasterCard Memorial Cup will take place May 16th through to the 25th. The cup arrives in Kitchener on Thursday and we can be sure that the Kitchener Rangers, who captured the Ontario Hockey League championship last night, will make us proud in their quest to keep the cup in Kitchener.

The 90th anniversary Memorial Cup championship features the best hockey currently played on Canadian soil. As well, the Canadian Forces will be featured prominently.

The Memorial Cup was donated to the Ontario Hockey Association in 1919 as a memorial to the Canadians who fought and died in the first world war. Current military personnel and veterans will be honoured for their service this year.

Volunteers, community sponsors and the entire city have been working tirelessly to ensure that the 90th anniversary of the Memorial Cup is a fitting tribute to junior hockey in Canada. I ask this House to join me in wishing all players, the members of the Rangers' team, and all people in Kitchener the very best.

Quebec Byelections
Statements By Members

May 13th, 2008 / 2:10 p.m.

Bloc

Mario Laframboise Argenteuil—Papineau—Mirabel, QC

Mr. Speaker, on this day after the byelections that were held in three Quebec ridings, I want, on behalf of the Bloc Québécois, to congratulate the three candidates from the Parti Québécois for their excellent campaign.

The people in the ridings of Bourget and Pointe-aux-Trembles reiterated their confidence in the Parti Québécois by electing our former colleague, Maka Kotto and former minister Nicole Léger, who is returning to politics.

I also want to acknowledge the impressive performance by the Parti Québécois candidate for Hull, Dr. Gilles Aubé, who gained an impressive increase in support for his party over the previous election.

The results of these three byelections are a tremendous testament to the fact that under Pauline Marois' leadership, the Parti Québécois has earned the trust of a increasing proportion of the Quebec electorate.

Conservative Government
Statements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Liberal

Geoff Regan Halifax West, NS

Mr. Speaker, Canadians are starting to get used to this government's arrogant attitude. When the Conservatives have problems, which is increasingly the case, their strategy is to fire at all targets: the provinces, the media, Elections Canada, the nuclear regulator, the RCMP. The list of enemies is long.

Their hypocrisy knows no bounds. The Kelowna accord is just one example. Their most inane argument about Kelowna is that it was not written on paper, so imagine my surprise when the PM made a $30 billion defence strategy announcement that is not written down on paper. Was there a briefing note? No. Was there a background document? No. Were there any specific details at all? No.

For $30 billion, Canadians expect the kind of detailed, comprehensive plan they normally get from the Department of National Defence, not just a smokescreen.

Members of Parliament
Statements By Members

2:15 p.m.

Conservative

Rob Anders Calgary West, AB

Mr. Speaker, recently, the members for Toronto Centre, Willowdale and Vancouver Quadra asked voters to send them to Ottawa to represent their interests in the House of Commons.

Last night, these three Liberal MPs abstained on a matter of confidence on the economy. Even though they were elected just weeks ago, already they are refusing to do their job to stand and vote. Who will stand for Toronto Centre, Willowdale and Vancouver Quadra if not their MPs?

Canadians expect that those to whom they give that privilege will carry out the duties and responsibilities of elected members of Parliament, the simplest of which is the duty and responsibility to vote. It is clear that these Liberal MPs are more interested in scheming to regain power than representing their constituents in the House of Commons.

National Security
Oral Questions

2:15 p.m.

Saint-Laurent—Cartierville
Québec

Liberal

Stéphane Dion Leader of the Opposition

Mr. Speaker, the government still refuses to tell Canadians what security checks, if any, were followed with respect to the Minister of Foreign Affairs and his spouse.

Over the last six days, many security experts have said this is a valid question because of the risk to national security. Will the Prime Minister tell Canadians what security checks were followed?

National Security
Oral Questions

2:15 p.m.

Calgary Southwest
Alberta

Conservative

Stephen Harper Prime Minister

Mr. Speaker, that question is really trying to legitimize a transparent attempt to ask about what are purely private matters, although I will treat the question with the seriousness it deserves.

Of course, as leader I really do wish that I would know more about the dates of my caucus members. I certainly encourage them to bring them around to my office so I can at least meet them and to assure me that they will be able to be in question period the next day.

National Security
Oral Questions

2:15 p.m.

Saint-Laurent—Cartierville
Québec

Liberal

Stéphane Dion Leader of the Opposition

Mr. Speaker, over the past six days, some experts have not found the question to be amusing and have said that it is a serious security concern. They include Chris Mathers, former RCMP secret agent, Michel Juneau-Katsuya, former intelligence and security officer, Wesley Wark, intelligence and security expert with the University of Toronto, and many others, including the Minister of Public Works who said that, if he were in opposition, he would have asked the question.

The Prime Minister cannot evade the question. He has to tell Canadians what security measures, if any, were taken.

National Security
Oral Questions

2:15 p.m.

York—Simcoe
Ontario

Conservative

Peter Van Loan Leader of the Government in the House of Commons and Minister for Democratic Reform

Mr. Speaker, I think I told this House already that this government would not put national security at risk. However, we know that is not what this is about. This is about a Liberal leader with no policies, no vision, but he sure has a taste for salacious gossip and he does not mind seeing his party lowered to personal attacks. It is very different from what he said back on April 5, 2007, when he said, “I would be very pleased to see less personal attacks, less low politics”. Well, he certainly has changed.

National Security
Oral Questions

2:15 p.m.

Saint-Laurent—Cartierville
Québec

Liberal

Stéphane Dion Leader of the Opposition

Mr. Speaker, by refusing to answer, the Prime Ministeris needlessly prolonging his minister's agony. He is keeping Canadians in the dark about a security matter of concern to them and is leading us to believe, once again, that he has something to hide.

Is he refusing to answer because no security measure was taken and he does not want to admit that to Canadians?

National Security
Oral Questions

2:15 p.m.

York—Simcoe
Ontario

Conservative

Peter Van Loan Leader of the Government in the House of Commons and Minister for Democratic Reform

Mr. Speaker, Canadians believe that private lives should be private lives and be respected as such.

We see a Liberal Party and a Liberal leader that feel very differently. It is different, though, from what he used to say. He said, “I won't be playing the smear game. I will be playing the high road,” back on March 5, 2007.

Apparently the only high road he is willing to play is the road to higher taxes, a higher GST, higher gas taxes, higher fuel taxes. That is his high road.

Foreign Affairs
Oral Questions

2:20 p.m.

Liberal

Michael Ignatieff Etobicoke—Lakeshore, ON

Mr. Speaker, an earthquake in China has killed thousands of people. An odious regime in Burma is stopping relief aid at its frontiers. Lebanon is on the brink of conflict. This is the kind of moment when we need a Minister of Foreign Affairs who is on top of his job, but he is not. He is distracted. He is sidelined and he is grounded by his own gaffs.

Given the crises calling for Canadian leadership, I want to know, how can the Prime Minister of Canada continue to have confidence in his Minister of Foreign Affairs?

Foreign Affairs
Oral Questions

2:20 p.m.

Beauce
Québec

Conservative

Maxime Bernier Minister of Foreign Affairs

Mr. Speaker, this morning I spoke to the Chinese chargé d'affaires to once again, on behalf of all Canadians, express our condolences for the tragic event that took place in China. I also informed him that we will do what we can to provide the necessary assistance if needed. Canada will support China during this difficult time.

Foreign Affairs
Oral Questions

2:20 p.m.

Liberal

Michael Ignatieff Etobicoke—Lakeshore, ON

Mr. Speaker, yesterday I asked the Minister of Foreign Affairs a simple question. Either he did not know the answer or he was not authorized to answer. The question was about the responsibility to protect, which falls under his jurisdiction.

Does the government support the principle of responsibility to protect, yes or no? Further, does he agree that this principle must govern Canada's policy on the despicable regime in Burma?

Foreign Affairs
Oral Questions

2:20 p.m.

Beauce
Québec

Conservative

Maxime Bernier Minister of Foreign Affairs

Mr. Speaker, the situation in Burma is an unbelievable disaster. I have spoken with my Chinese counterpart, my French counterpart and other members of the international community to ensure that international aid, including aid from Canada, can enter Burma. That is what is most important.

We have also asked our ambassador in New York to transmit this message to the UN Security Council, insisting that the Security Council have a debate on ensuring that aid will get through to the Burmese people.

Minister of Foreign Affairs
Oral Questions

2:20 p.m.

Bloc

Gilles Duceppe Laurier—Sainte-Marie, QC

Mr. Speaker, in regard to the affair involving the Minister of Foreign Affairs, the government says that a security investigation is not necessary and this is just a matter of the minister’s private life. However, according to a government source quoted by the Canadian Press, ministers have an obligation to inform the Privy Council about any changes in their private lives, including changes to their marital status.

Does this not prove that the Minister of Foreign Affairs had a responsibility to inform the Prime Minister because he was aware of the shady past of his former partner?