House of Commons Hansard #46 of the 40th Parliament, 3rd Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was tax.

Topics

Taxation
Oral Questions

2:30 p.m.

Whitby—Oshawa
Ontario

Conservative

Jim Flaherty Minister of Finance

Mr. Speaker, we know that the Liberal opposition wants to raise taxes. The Liberals want to raise personal taxes for Canadians. They want to raise taxes for small and medium-sized Canadian businesses. They even muse about raising the GST.

We know, from the way they have voted in this place, that they are opposed to the tax reductions that we have made over the last four years; that is, $3,000 on average for every Canadian family in tax reductions over the course of the past four years.

Taxation
Oral Questions

2:30 p.m.

Liberal

Bonnie Crombie Mississauga—Streetsville, ON

Mr. Speaker, that minister drove the province of Ontario into debt. Now he is doing the same to our country.

Taxation
Oral Questions

2:30 p.m.

Some hon. members

Oh, oh!

Taxation
Oral Questions

2:30 p.m.

Liberal

The Speaker Peter Milliken

Order, please. I would urge a little self-control on all hon. members. The member for Mississauga—Streetsville has the floor and we need to be able to hear the question the member is asking. The hon. member for Mississauga—Streetsville.

Taxation
Oral Questions

2:30 p.m.

Liberal

Bonnie Crombie Mississauga—Streetsville, ON

It is thanks to a decade of sound Liberal financial management that we are not in the same mess as Greece and other countries.

Taxation
Oral Questions

2:30 p.m.

Some hon. members

Oh, oh.

Taxation
Oral Questions

2:30 p.m.

Liberal

Bonnie Crombie Mississauga—Streetsville, ON

The Liberals slew the Mulroney deficit. We cut personal and business taxes when we had surpluses because it was the right thing to do.

What did the Prime Minister and his Reform colleagues do? They voted against every tax cut for 10 years. Now they want to use borrowed money to pay for corporate tax cuts when the country is mired in a $54 billion Conservative deficit.

Taxation
Oral Questions

2:30 p.m.

Whitby—Oshawa
Ontario

Conservative

Jim Flaherty Minister of Finance

Mr. Speaker, I thank the member opposite for the lobbed question.

I know the Liberals are in favour of raising taxes but most Canadians do not want to pay more taxes and they do not want to go through the cuts that the Liberal government made in the mid-1990s.

I am in good company with a former premier of Ontario, the member for Toronto Centre, when he criticized the federal government for cutting expenses on the backs of nurses, students, teachers and--

Taxation
Oral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Liberal

The Speaker Peter Milliken

The hon. member for Markham—Unionville.

Taxation
Oral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Liberal

John McCallum Markham—Unionville, ON

Mr. Speaker, the only party that wants to raise taxes is the Conservative Party with its massive EI premium hikes, costing 200,000 jobs.

The Conservatives are increasing the deficit by borrowing billions of dollars to finance corporate tax cuts. Obviously, they are going to pass the bill on to the taxpayers, who will have to absorb all this extra debt.

Why make families in debt pay for corporate tax cuts?

Taxation
Oral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Whitby—Oshawa
Ontario

Conservative

Jim Flaherty Minister of Finance

Again, Mr. Speaker, I think I am in good company with respect to the tax issue. The member for Markham—Unionville said, “corporate tax cuts are one of the best strategies to attract investment and help manufacturers battered by the high Canadian dollar”.

At least that is how he felt in 2007. He may have been philosophically misguided since then, but still, most Canadians believe in the reduction of taxes. They see it in the strength of our economy. They see the strength of our economy precisely because we have reduced the cost of doing business in this country.

Taxation
Oral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Liberal

John McCallum Markham—Unionville, ON

Mr. Speaker, we must remember that in 2007 we were running a surplus and we were in favour of lower corporate taxes, but not when it puts the country into greater debt, which is exactly what the minister is doing.

We are at a crossroads: borrow money today to cut corporate taxes or freeze corporate taxes, fight the deficit and invest in education.

We can take the Conservative path of the eighties and become more like Greece or the Liberal path of the nineties and become more prosperous. Why are the Conservatives choosing more debt over prosperity?

Taxation
Oral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Whitby—Oshawa
Ontario

Conservative

Jim Flaherty Minister of Finance

Mr. Speaker, I know what the Liberal government wreaked on the Canadian people in the mid-1990s, what it did to our schools, what it did to higher tuition in universities, what it did to our hospitals and what it did to nurses. All of those things, that is what the Liberals did in the 1990s.

This is Canada. We have the best fiscal situation in the G7. We have the soundest financial system in the G7. We have the highest credit rating in the world. The hon. member should be proud of the performance of his country and stop knocking it.

Climate Change
Oral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Bloc

Bernard Bigras Rosemont—La Petite-Patrie, QC

Mr. Speaker, the Secretary-General of the United Nations has asked Canada to add the fight against climate change to the G20 agenda. What was the Prime Minister's response? The agenda will focus on the economy. That says it all. For the Prime Minister, the economy and the environment do not go hand in hand. Sustainable development is a foreign concept to him.

How can the Prime Minister separate the environment and the economy when it is obvious that the environment is not an obstacle to but a motor for economic development?

Climate Change
Oral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Calgary Centre-North
Alberta

Conservative

Jim Prentice Minister of the Environment

Mr. Speaker, yesterday the Prime Minister indicated that many topics will be discussed at the G8, including climate change.

Our government supported the Copenhagen accord in December. We have committed, along with other countries, to making this accord an international treaty. That is why I recently went to Bonn to take part in meetings with environment ministers. The Bloc should be supporting our efforts.