House of Commons Hansard #14 of the 40th Parliament, 2nd Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was goods.

Topics

Canada-U.S. Border
Oral Questions

2:15 p.m.

Etobicoke—Lakeshore
Ontario

Liberal

Michael Ignatieff Leader of the Opposition

Mr. Speaker, let me raise another matter, which is the U.S.-Canada border. It has become a choke chain on the Canadian economy. The tourist industry, the auto sector and communities next door to the American border have all suffered from the U.S. tightening of the border.

What specific measures will the Prime Minister propose to the president to loosen that chain? For example, will he ask the president to rethink the passport requirement due to be imposed in June?

Canada-U.S. Border
Oral Questions

2:15 p.m.

Calgary Southwest
Alberta

Conservative

Stephen Harper Prime Minister

Mr. Speaker, first, I think the entire House knows that it was under the preceding government that the border was tightened and, in fact, that we lost our privileged relationship with the United States.

Under our government, some of the implementation of the matters that the hon. member speaks of have been delayed several times. We always indicate to our American friends that this government views the United States as our closest ally and partner, that we share not only a vibrant commercial relationship with it but also its security concerns, and that we are always willing to work as a partner.

The Environment
Oral Questions

2:20 p.m.

Etobicoke—Lakeshore
Ontario

Liberal

Michael Ignatieff Leader of the Opposition

Mr. Speaker, the third point I want to raise is this: President Obama's visit will give us a chance to unite in the fight against climate change. The government claims that its environmental standards are similar to those of the new American administration, but nothing could be further from the truth.

Is the Prime Minister ready to get on board with the U.S. government's initiatives, and is he ready to support stricter North American targets?

The Environment
Oral Questions

2:20 p.m.

Calgary Southwest
Alberta

Conservative

Stephen Harper Prime Minister

Mr. Speaker, the climate change targets the opposition wants are completely unrealistic. Neither this government nor the U.S. government want unrealistic targets. It is critical that we talk about our objectives together. In addition to an integrated continental approach with an integrated economy, we must insist, in international talks, that all large countries adopt targets. That is this government's position and that of—

The Environment
Oral Questions

2:20 p.m.

Liberal

Le Président Peter Milliken

The hon. member for Ottawa South.

The Environment
Oral Questions

2:20 p.m.

Liberal

David McGuinty Ottawa South, ON

Mr. Speaker, Canadians are still waiting for a regulatory framework for the fight against climate change. The opposition rewrote the Clean Air Act, then the Conservatives let it drop. Eleven independent groups say that the Conservative plan is doomed to failure, and Canada is falling behind internationally.

In anticipation of President Obama's visit, how can we undertake climate change negotiations with the United States if we have nothing to bring to the table?

The Environment
Oral Questions

2:20 p.m.

Calgary Southwest
Alberta

Conservative

Stephen Harper Prime Minister

Mr. Speaker, nothing could be further from the truth, and I want to finish my previous answer.

It is important to understand that the targets the Obama administration is looking at in terms of climate change are very close to the targets of this government. They are certainly not the completely unrealistic targets of the opposition.

The position of the opposition parties that only some emitters should reduce their emissions and not all emitters is unacceptable to this government and I think it is also unacceptable to the government of the United States.

The Environment
Oral Questions

2:20 p.m.

Liberal

David McGuinty Ottawa South, ON

Mr. Speaker, the Conservatives' climate change story has gone from made in Canada to delayed in Canada to made in the U.S.A. Canada is scrambling to catch up, lurching from ice floe to ice floe, without credibility and without a plan.

When President Obama says cap and trade, he means cap as in hard cap, not intensity-based targets. When he says trade, he means trading that is in line with the European Union and, of course, the United Nations.

Why does the minister not simply admit that he is making it up on the fly and that he is no position to cooperate with the United States on climate change? Or, is he the Minister of the Environment in prime minister Obama's country?

The Environment
Oral Questions

2:20 p.m.

Calgary Centre-North
Alberta

Conservative

Jim Prentice Minister of the Environment

Mr. Speaker, the targets we have spoken of are very clear.

I would say that the hon. member opposite is making fairly extreme statements, both in the House and elsewhere, about this particular matter. He has referred to the ecoTrust funds, for example, including the ones that went to the Government of Ontario, as eco-fraud.

I would ask the member here in the House if he could share with the House any specific accusations of fraud that involve the Government of Ontario or any other provincial government?

Culture
Oral Questions

February 12th, 2009 / 2:20 p.m.

Bloc

Gilles Duceppe Laurier—Sainte-Marie, QC

Mr. Speaker, the Canada Prizes for the Arts are turning into the blooper prizes, with the Minister of Canadian Heritage and Official Languages in the leading role. Yesterday, he had the audacity to say that the prizes were not even his project.

I would remind this House that in its latest budget, the government earmarked $25 million for something that is allegedly not its project.

Does the Prime Minister realize that he has no option but to cancel this project, which has been universally condemned, and transfer the $25 million to the cultural programs he cut?

Culture
Oral Questions

2:25 p.m.

Calgary Southwest
Alberta

Conservative

Stephen Harper Prime Minister

Mr. Speaker, the Bloc always opposes any initiative that strengthens Canada. This government has established world-class science and medicine prizes. We are doing the same thing for the arts.

There is a proposal in the budget. The Minister of Canadian Heritage and Official Languages is consulting the cultural community to clarify that proposal. The project will be good for Canada, despite the Bloc's opposition.

Culture
Oral Questions

2:25 p.m.

Bloc

Gilles Duceppe Laurier—Sainte-Marie, QC

Mr. Speaker, if I understand correctly, during the vote on the budget, this House voted $25 million in funding for an unknown project, and to boot, the government is cutting cultural programs without familiarizing itself with the analyses justifying these cuts. So much for sound management of public funds.

Will the Minister of Canadian Heritage and Official Languages shoulder his responsibilities and take his cue from Edgar Allan Poe, saying, “Nevermore, nevermore”?

Culture
Oral Questions

2:25 p.m.

Calgary Southwest
Alberta

Conservative

Stephen Harper Prime Minister

Mr. Speaker, the only justifying here is being done by the Bloc leader, who is always trying to justify voting against initiatives that benefit the cultural community. This government is taking action and is going to create a world-class prize. This is important for this country. The Bloc may always vote against these things, but we are going to take action.

Culture
Oral Questions

2:25 p.m.

Bloc

Carole Lavallée Saint-Bruno—Saint-Hubert, QC

Mr. Speaker, the Minister of Canadian Heritage and Official Languages has shown that he is incompetent because he was duped by two promoters who did not hesitate to lie and to invent backers to snatch $25 million from the government for the Canada Prizes for the Arts and Creativity.

Rather than criticizing the opposition members who do not support his project and attempting to defend the indefensible, would it not be better for the minister to be working on re-establishing programs that will allow our artists to promote culture abroad?

Culture
Oral Questions

2:25 p.m.

Port Moody—Westwood—Port Coquitlam
B.C.

Conservative

James Moore Minister of Canadian Heritage and Official Languages

Mr. Speaker, we will make investments this year, as we have in the past and will in the future, to promote our artists around the world. This year, we are investing $21 million. Yes, there is $25 million in the budget to create prizes for artists, to look after the cultural and artistic community in Canada. We want to create prizes, like those we have for doctors and scientists, to celebrate Canadian artists, even if the Bloc votes against it. The Bloc always votes against measures to support artists' needs. It votes against every bill that seeks to establish real prizes for Canada. That is shameful.