House of Commons Hansard #112 of the 40th Parliament, 2nd Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was small.

Topics

Oral Questions
Points of Order
Oral Questions

3:05 p.m.

Liberal

Navdeep Bains Mississauga—Brampton South, ON

Mr. Speaker, during question period, as we were talking about a very important issue regarding the detainees in Afghanistan, the President of the Treasury Board made a gun-like gesture, something along this nature.

I found that to be completely inappropriate, wrong and disturbing. I would ask the minister to apologize.

Oral Questions
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Oral Questions

3:05 p.m.

Provencher
Manitoba

Conservative

Vic Toews President of the Treasury Board

Mr. Speaker, let us put on the record what happened. The member for Toronto Centre said that there were no Afghan prisoners transferred by Canadian soldiers to Afghanis prior to 2006. It is a ridiculous suggestion that Canadians did not transfer. What did they do with these prisoners? They did not hold them.

Oral Questions
Points of Order
Oral Questions

3:05 p.m.

Liberal

Navdeep Bains Mississauga—Brampton South, ON

Mr. Speaker, it is very clear that the fact that the President of the Treasury Board is unwilling reflects some sort of guilt there. He made the gesture. It was wrong. He should apologize. That is the issue.

Oral Questions
Points of Order
Oral Questions

3:05 p.m.

Langley
B.C.

Conservative

Mark Warawa Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of the Environment

Mr. Speaker, I was surprised to see that member making those gestures of which he is now accusing the member. If you would check the blues and check the cameras, you will see that member making the gesture.

It is not appropriate for him to be attacking a member over here when he is doing that.

Oral Questions
Points of Order
Oral Questions

3:05 p.m.

Conservative

Vic Toews Provencher, MB

Mr. Speaker, Canadian soldiers had these prisoners. They transferred them to the Afghanis. The suggestion made by the member opposite was there was something untoward done by Canadian soldiers to Afghani prisoners. If he has any evidence in that respect, he should stand and give that evidence. The fact is Canadian soldiers do not mistreat their prisoners.

Oral Questions
Points of Order
Oral Questions

3:05 p.m.

Liberal

Bob Rae Toronto Centre, ON

Mr. Speaker, I am going to mark my words carefully. The President of the Treasury Board has made a statement about my views, about what I have said and what I have ever suggested, which is completely and utterly false. He should know that and he should know better.

He has made a statement today in the House, which is completely and categorically untrue with respect to what I have ever suggested or has been suggested on this side with respect to the conduct of Canadian soldiers. It is absolutely ridiculous for the minister to have made such a statement. He has simply compounded the error, in which he got himself involved.

For him to point his fingers over here and suggest that anyone on this side has said anything with respect to how Canadian soldiers have treated Afghan detainees is completely and utterly false. That is not the issue before the House.

The issue before the House is the question of the conduct of the Conservative government with respect to how it has treated information received with respect to the treatment by the Afghan authorities of Afghan detainees. To make any other suggestion is completely and utterly preposterous.

Oral Questions
Points of Order
Oral Questions

3:10 p.m.

Liberal

The Speaker Peter Milliken

It sounds like a continuation of perhaps the debate that might have arisen during question period had it been debate instead of questions and responses.

In the circumstances, the Chair saw none of the alleged gestures, and nothing that I have seen since has indicated there was something unparliamentary that occurred. Accordingly I do not think this is appropriate for further discussion at this time.

Standing Committee on Access to Information, Privacy and Ethics
Points of Order
Oral Questions

3:10 p.m.

Liberal

Paul Szabo Mississauga South, ON

Mr. Speaker, Standing Order 18 states in part, “No Member shall speak disrespectfully...nor use offensive words against either House, or against any Member thereof”.

Yesterday, on page 6864 of Hansard, the Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Canadian Heritage said:

This morning, in the Standing Committee on Access to Information, Privacy and Ethics, I had to put up with the abhorrent behaviour of a partisan chair, who pays no attention to the rules governing parliamentary committees whatsoever. However, during that meeting, I provided the respect that each member is due.

These words, I submit, are not only offensive, but they are without foundation and if I do not defend myself there may be some who will take those statements as being fact.

Mr. Speaker, accordingly, I would respectfully request that you review the transcript of the November 17 meeting of the Standing Committee on Access to Information, Privacy and Ethics to determine whether or not there is a foundation for the member's statements. Should you find that they are without foundation and that certain words in fact are offensive, I would be pleased to rise on a question of privilege and to move the appropriate motion.

Standing Committee on Access to Information, Privacy and Ethics
Points of Order
Oral Questions

3:10 p.m.

Peterborough
Ontario

Conservative

Dean Del Mastro Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Canadian Heritage

Mr. Speaker, I actually thought referring to the member as a partisan chair would be something he would be proud of because that is how he conducts himself.

Yesterday, I brought a motion before that committee and the member did not even allow me the opportunity to introduce or speak to the motion. I thought that was abuse of my privilege as a member, but he did not much care about that because that is how he operates.

He also interjected into my allotted question time because he objected to a word that I used, a word that perhaps he is a little touchy about, a word that prompted the member for Scarborough Southwest to tweet that she thought that apparently I should lose some weight, which I also thought was inappropriate. I used the word “crime” when talking about Liberal actions related to the sponsorship scandal. He insisted before the witness that I could not use that word. I will read directly--

Standing Committee on Access to Information, Privacy and Ethics
Points of Order
Oral Questions

3:10 p.m.

Liberal

The Speaker Peter Milliken

Order. All these matters are ones that in my view should be taken up in the committee.

I would suggest that the Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Canadian Heritage and the member for Mississauga South have a meeting of the committee and discuss the matter of chairing of the meetings, what things are allowed and what are not in the committee, at the committee. It is not for the Speaker or for the House to get involved in that debate. It is, respectfully, a matter for the committee. I suggest that both members raise the matter there and attempt to get a resolution in the committee. If necessary, we will hear something here, but I am not going to proceed with that now.

Standing Committee on Access to Information, Privacy and Ethics
Points of Order
Oral Questions

3:10 p.m.

Liberal

Paul Szabo Mississauga South, ON

A question of privilege.

Standing Committee on Access to Information, Privacy and Ethics
Points of Order
Oral Questions

3:10 p.m.

Liberal

The Speaker Peter Milliken

If there is a question of privilege, the member has to give notice in writing of the question and raise it an hour later. I will hear from him when I have received the notice.

Standing Committee on Access to Information, Privacy and Ethics
Points of Order
Oral Questions

3:15 p.m.

Liberal

Paul Szabo Mississauga South, ON

The same one.

Standing Committee on Access to Information, Privacy and Ethics
Points of Order
Oral Questions

3:15 p.m.

Liberal

The Speaker Peter Milliken

I do not have a written notice of this one.

Standing Committee on Access to Information, Privacy and Ethics
Points of Order
Oral Questions

3:15 p.m.

An hon. member

Point of order.