House of Commons Hansard #105 of the 39th Parliament, 2nd Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was country.

Topics

Bill C-490
Statements By Members

June 4th, 2008 / 2:15 p.m.

Bloc

Raymond Gravel Repentigny, QC

Mr. Speaker, today, June 4, members of the House are invited to vote on the bill introduced by the Bloc Québécois, Bill C-490, at second reading. The bill calls on the government to correct the terrible injustice to seniors who have been cheated by the guaranteed income supplement or GIS program, and improve the lives of those most vulnerable.

Introduced in December 2007 by my colleague, the hon. member for Alfred-Pellan, this bill has four components: automatic registration; an increase of $110 a month; full retroactivity for seniors entitled to the GIS; and a six-month compassionate measure for seniors who have lost their spouse.

With this bill, we will really find out if the Conservative members are willing to respond to the appeals of the many seniors' associations that have shown their support.

Since this is Seniors Month, I urge all members to vote unanimously in favour of Bill C-490. It is a matter of justice and dignity for all seniors in Quebec.

Conservative Party of Canada
Statements By Members

2:15 p.m.

Liberal

Yasmin Ratansi Don Valley East, ON

Mr. Speaker, Canadians are watching in disbelief as a desperate PMO is resorting to pitbull tactics to cover up scandals within its own caucus.

The member for Nepean—Carleton seems to be the Conservative point man to sweep under the carpet 125 instances where Conservative Party candidates received loans for their campaigns in the last election.

There are 19 Conservative candidates who still have loans outstanding from the last election.

According to Elections Canada, three Conservatives had donations exceeding the limit of $5,400 per donor.

Talk about hypocrisy: the Conservatives take the cake on hypocrisy.

I suggest that the member for Nepean—Carleton ask why the PMO is hanging him out to dry by asking him to support the violations of his Conservative colleagues.

Leadership Campaign Financing
Statements By Members

2:20 p.m.

Conservative

Pierre Poilievre Nepean—Carleton, ON

Mr. Speaker, the Liberal leader has now missed the deadline to pay off his leadership debts, which means that they are now illegal donations, unless, that is, Elections Canada has provided a special exemption. This raises questions.

If the Liberal leader is too weak to manage his own finances, how could he possibly manage the country's finances?

Second, if he cannot repay these wealthy elites and powerful insiders, who is pulling the Liberal leader's strings?

Third, how much does he owe these wealthy elites?

Fourth, who are these wealthy elites and what have they asked for in exchange for their money?

Fifth, when will they be paid off?

Today we call on the Liberal leader to table in the House of Commons the special arrangement he is seeking with Elections Canada. If he has nothing to hide, why will he not just table those documents right now?

The Economy
Oral Questions

2:20 p.m.

Saint-Laurent—Cartierville
Québec

Liberal

Stéphane Dion Leader of the Opposition

Mr. Speaker, our thoughts are with the thousands of workers who are losing their jobs in Oshawa. Their plight speaks to the real economic challenges facing our country, notably our manufacturing sector. The latest numbers show that in the first quarter of 2008 Canada had the worst-performing economy in the G-7.

When will the Prime Minister admit that his finance minister's rosy words are wrong and Canada's economy is in trouble? When will the Prime Minister wake up and smell the coffee?

The Economy
Oral Questions

2:20 p.m.

Calgary Southwest
Alberta

Conservative

Stephen Harper Prime Minister

Mr. Speaker, the Minister of Finance is of course correct. If we actually look at all of the numbers, the truth of the matter is that in spite of a couple of one time events, the reality is that the Canadian economy continues to create jobs and the Canadian economy continues to see income growth, notwithstanding that there are certain problems we should address.

Having talked to virtually all of our G-8 leaders last week, I can tell the House that they would love to have an economy like Canada's. It is such a disappointment that all the opposition does is run down our country.

The Economy
Oral Questions

2:20 p.m.

Saint-Laurent—Cartierville
Québec

Liberal

Stéphane Dion Leader of the Opposition

Mr. Speaker, it is his Minister of Finance who is bringing this country down.

The Prime Minister allowed his foreign affairs minister to make gaffe after gaffe before he decided to fire him.

Will he learn from his mistakes and dismiss his Minister of Finance immediately before he jeopardizes our automobile and manufacturing industries even further?

The Economy
Oral Questions

2:20 p.m.

Calgary Southwest
Alberta

Conservative

Stephen Harper Prime Minister

Mr. Speaker, the international economic organization said that Canada was going to avoid a recession and that the health of its economy had improved thanks to the actions and tax cuts made by the Minister of Finance.

Rest assured that no one in the world is calling on the government to impose new taxes on the Canadian economy. That is the opposition leader's idea.

The Economy
Oral Questions

2:20 p.m.

Saint-Laurent—Cartierville
Québec

Liberal

Stéphane Dion Leader of the Opposition

The Prime Minister has no credibility about that because he gave his support to the green shift in British Columbia.

The finance minister told the world not to invest in Ontario, calling the province of Ontario “the last place you will go”. Unfortunately, General Motors took his advice and the workers and their families are paying the price.

Any finance minister who discourages investment and job growth is not fit to be finance minister. Will the Prime Minister give Ontario some good economic news and fire his finance minister?

The Economy
Oral Questions

2:25 p.m.

Calgary Southwest
Alberta

Conservative

Stephen Harper Prime Minister

Mr. Speaker, we know that General Motors is experiencing worldwide problems. At the same time, we know that yesterday the Ford Motor Company, with the Minister of Industry, announced some investments in this country.

The reality is that the fundamentals of the Canadian economy are strong due to the actions of the Minister of Finance, especially his actions in cutting taxes, in cutting taxes early and deep before there was a recession.

The Leader of the Opposition wants to impose new taxes that would put this economy into recession. That is why he is not fit to be Prime Minister of this country.

The Economy
Oral Questions

2:25 p.m.

Liberal

Michael Ignatieff Etobicoke—Lakeshore, ON

Mr. Speaker, the finance minister declared that Ontario was “the last place” to invest and he does not seem to care that General Motors took him at his word.

It is not just the 2,600 jobs lost at Oshawa. It is the 12,000 jobs at risk as the cuts move through the supply chain throughout central Canada. Ontario workers need a helping hand, not a cold shoulder. When will the minister stop tearing Ontario down and start helping it to come back?

The Economy
Oral Questions

2:25 p.m.

Whitby—Oshawa
Ontario

Conservative

Jim Flaherty Minister of Finance

Mr. Speaker, I am sure if the hon. member had read the budget, he would have seen the $250 million automotive innovation fund. Some of the people who are losing their jobs in Oshawa and Whitby are my friends and neighbours. This is serious business for us. We are investing in innovation.

The future of General Motors in Oshawa requires that the car plant get a third product. It is going to have two. Because of innovation, it already has the Impala. Then it will have the Camaro in the fall. We are going to work with the union, with CAW and with General Motors to get that third car in Oshawa.

The Economy
Oral Questions

2:25 p.m.

Liberal

Michael Ignatieff Etobicoke—Lakeshore, ON

Mr. Speaker, the workers in Oshawa are going to have plenty of time to read his budget because they are going to be unemployed. The job losses are right on his doorstep and some of the workers who we are talking about are in his constituency.

When he returns to Whitby—Oshawa in the summer, will he be telling them the same delusional tales about our Canadian economy? Will he dare to tell them that things are all right?

The Economy
Oral Questions

2:25 p.m.

Whitby—Oshawa
Ontario

Conservative

Jim Flaherty Minister of Finance

Mr. Speaker, I will tell them the same thing the OECD said today in its spring economic outlook, and that is Canada's economy looks good. In fact, Canada's GDP will lead the OECD next year, in 2009. That is what I will tell them.

I will also tell them that the opposition members do not know anything about the auto sector. They do not obviously know about the beacon project. They do not know about the auto strategy that was developed before. They do not know about the flex line in the car plant in Oshawa. They are ignorant of all that. What they know is how to increase the price of gasoline with a carbon tax. How that is going to help General Motors and its workers in Oshawa.

Foreign Affairs
Oral Questions

2:25 p.m.

Bloc

Pierre Paquette Joliette, QC

Mr. Speaker, yesterday the government indicated that neither the Prime Minister nor the Minister of Public Safety nor the former minister of foreign affairs, the hon. member for Beauce, intend to appear before the parliamentary committee concerning the Julie Couillard affair and the risks to public safety. That shows a serious lack of respect for our democratic institutions.

What does the Prime Minister have to hide so much that he would compromise his sense of honour? This is unworthy of a head of state.

Foreign Affairs
Oral Questions

2:25 p.m.

Calgary Southwest
Alberta

Conservative

Stephen Harper Prime Minister

Mr. Speaker, I know the opposition wants to have public hearings for partisan reasons. That is their game.

This government is committed to reviewing the facts in a professional and objective manner and that is what we are going to do.