House of Commons Hansard #90 of the 39th Parliament, 2nd Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was crtc.

Topics

Elections Canada
Oral Questions

3:05 p.m.

Liberal

Yasmin Ratansi Don Valley East, ON

Mr. Speaker, I was finishing with the question anyway. He is young so he will do what is asked of him without too much questioning.

Why does the parliamentary secretary, every day, spew nonsense that the Federal Court has already ruled irrelevant?

Elections Canada
Oral Questions

3:05 p.m.

Nepean—Carleton
Ontario

Conservative

Pierre Poilievre Parliamentary Secretary to the President of the Treasury Board

Mr. Speaker, I thank her for complimenting me on my youthful energy.

On July 14, 2004 the Liberal Party made two transfers to Rick Limoges' local campaign for $4,000 and for $5,000. The next day, Rick Limoges' local campaign made two transfers back to the Liberal Party for $4,000 and $5,000. That is $4,000 in, $4,000 out; $5,000 in, $5,000 out; in, out; in, out. Where is Elections Canada?

Afghanistan
Oral Questions

3:05 p.m.

Liberal

The Speaker Peter Milliken

Order, please. Following discussions among representatives of all parties in the House, I invite hon. members to rise and observe a moment of silence in honour of the fallen Canadian soldier who recently died in Afghanistan.

[A moment of silence observed]

Presence in Gallery
Oral Questions

3:10 p.m.

Liberal

The Speaker Peter Milliken

I would like to draw the attention of hon. members to the presence in the gallery of Ms. Anne McGuire, M.P., Minister for Disabled People of the United Kingdom.

Presence in Gallery
Oral Questions

3:10 p.m.

Some hon. members

Hear, hear!

Conflict of Interest Code
Points of Order
Oral Questions

May 7th, 2008 / 3:10 p.m.

Liberal

Robert Thibault West Nova, NS

Mr. Speaker, as you may remember, in November the member for Dufferin—Caledon raised a point of order in committee as to whether I could participate at committee in light of a potential lawsuit or threat of a lawsuit by Brian Mulroney. At committee, the chair decided that I could continue on and that there was no conflict, which I did.

Subsequently, the same member, the member for Dufferin—Caledon, asked the Ethics Commissioner to investigate as to whether there was a breach of the code on the question that there could be a pecuniary interest. The Ethics Commissioner has done so and I have been in discussion with her. The House will be receiving or may already have received her report.

I would like to thank the conflict of interest and Ethics Commissioner for her work on this file. This case dealt largely with issues that have never been dealt with and I am sure that all members will benefit from her efforts. I know that the commissioner found that I had acted in good faith in these matters and she did not recommend any sanctions.

I acknowledge the commissioner's findings and I will take all necessary steps, as soon as possible, to ensure that I am in full compliance with the rulings of the Conflict of Interest Code.

The commissioner found, which should be of interest to all members of the House, that there could be a pecuniary interest in a member if he is sued by anybody, not even another member but by anybody, because it could create a liability.

The commissioner evaluated the code as it currently stands and ruled, and I fully accept her ruling, that I could have an interest and should not have participated in that committee. I did participate in the committee because the ruling came after the committee and I was only served with the lawsuit well into this current fiscal year, a long time after the actions had been started by the member and before the Ethics Commissioner started her investigation.

The Ethics Commissioner pointed out that there was a risk that any member could be removed from their duty by some trivial lawsuits that could be brought by one member on the other. I would ask the House that the relevant committee review this ruling and accept it but look at whether there should be modifications to the rules of the House or to the code of conduct.

In closing, I want to assure everyone that the Liberal opposition will not allow frivolous lawsuits to stop it from vigorously holding the government to proper account.

Conflict of Interest Code
Points of Order
Oral Questions

3:10 p.m.

Conservative

David Tilson Dufferin—Caledon, ON

Mr. Speaker, I have yet to see this report but I gather, from the way the member has referred to it, that he has been found guilty of a conflict of interest. Yes, I did raise the issue in committee and, yes, I did think it was improper. When a former prime minister of this country is suing him for $1 million he has no right to participate in that committee.

I believe he was the lead with respect to the Liberals on that committee and he had no business asking questions or voting on motions. He had no business cross-examining the former prime minister in the committee. In fact, he tainted the whole proceeding of that committee, known as the Schreiber-Mulroney proceeding.

Conflict of Interest and Ethics Commissioner
Oral Questions

3:15 p.m.

Liberal

The Speaker Peter Milliken

Order, please. We are getting into a debate and, in my view, there is no point of order that has been raised by either hon. member.

What I will do, pursuant to section 28 of the Conflict of Interest Code for Members of the House of Commons, is do my duty and present to the House the report of the Conflict of Interest and Ethics Commissioner on an inquiry in relation to the hon. member for West Nova. The document is tabled and it is available for members to read. That is the end of that matter.

I gather that the hon. member for Peace River is rising on a point of order arising out of question period.

Oral Questions
Points of Order
Oral Questions

3:15 p.m.

Conservative

Chris Warkentin Peace River, AB

Mr. Speaker, earlier in question period today, the Liberal leader referred to a document that he referred to as the Kelowna accord and, as is customary in the House, when a member refers to a document, he or she should be able to produce that document.

What I am asking today is that the Liberal leader do what his predecessor never was able to do and that is provide for the House a signed copy of the Kelowna accord.

Oral Questions
Points of Order
Oral Questions

3:15 p.m.

Liberal

The Speaker Peter Milliken

I think the hon. member for Peace River may want to check the rules because the rule he cited applies to ministers who quote from documents, not to other hon. members.

Therefore, I am afraid that he may be able to complain if ministers do not table documents but for another hon. member to refer to a document and not table it is quite in order. I am afraid that is the end of that.

We now have a question of privilege that I will hear right away. The member for Rimouski-Neigette—Témiscouata—Les Basques.

Comments by the Parliamentary Secretary for the Minister of Human Resources and Social Development
Privilege
Oral Questions

3:15 p.m.

Independent

Louise Thibault Rimouski-Neigette—Témiscouata—Les Basques, QC

Mr. Speaker, I will very briefly explain why I am raising a question of privilege concerning the Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Human Resources and Social Development. Yesterday evening, during the adjournment debate, in response to something I had said, the Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Human Resources and Social Development said, and I am quoting directly from Hansard:

It must have been frustrating for the member during her three years with the Bloc Québécois when she had to sit idly by while it was completely incapable of accomplishing a single goal on the seniors file.

The Conservative government and all its spokespeople routinely disparage the other parties in this House, and this is tolerated. However, it is unacceptable, in my opinion. I will let the parties decide whether or not to take action. However, when the parliamentary secretary directly disparages a member, namely me, in a mean and calculated manner, it is a personal and collective affront to the people I legitimately represent in this House.

This sort of insidious and damaging remark, which reflects on a member's reputation and was made in this House, should not be tolerated. I therefore ask the parliamentary secretary to retract her comments.

Comments by the Parliamentary Secretary for the Minister of Human Resources and Social Development
Privilege
Oral Questions

3:15 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 believe the comments we just heard from the member could be better characterized as debate. It relates to the general issue of whether or not the Bloc Québécois, a party committed to only being in opposition, could ever actually change anything in Ottawa.

I think that properly falls into the area of debate and in no way is seen as a personal attack. It has to deal with political efficacy and whether or not we can actually pass legislation and do things by being always committed to being in opposition and committed to never being in government.

It is our view, of course, in that debate that we need to be serious about wanting to be a government in order to change things in this country.

Comments by the Parliamentary Secretary for the Minister of Human Resources and Social Development
Privilege
Oral Questions

3:15 p.m.

Bloc

Pierre Paquette Joliette, QC

Mr. Speaker, the response by the Leader of the Government in the House of Commons is totally unacceptable. The members from the Bloc Québécois were democratically elected by our constituents and that is a choice these people made based on their vision for the development of Quebec. If the hon. member thinks voting for the Bloc Québécois means being in eternal opposition, then he is wrong. When Quebec becomes a sovereign nation, that is when we will have real power and that is what we are working toward every day.

Comments by the Parliamentary Secretary for the Minister of Human Resources and Social Development
Privilege
Oral Questions

3:15 p.m.

Liberal

The Speaker Peter Milliken

I will review the comments the hon. member for Rimouski-Neigette—Témiscouata—Les Basques is complaining about and, if necessary, I will report back to the House later.

The member for Edmonton—Sherwood Park now has the floor on a point of order.

Oral Questions
Points of Order
Oral Questions

3:20 p.m.

Conservative

Ken Epp Edmonton—Sherwood Park, AB

Mr. Speaker, my point was actually on the same one as the member for Peace River. Pursuant to his request, I would ask for the unanimous consent of the House to permit the member from the other side to table a copy of the Kelowna accord as requested. We would love to see it and I am sure he is eager to show it to us.