House of Commons Hansard #121 of the 40th Parliament, 3rd Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was judge.

Topics

Rick Hansen 25th Anniversary Relay
Statements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Conservative

John Weston West Vancouver—Sunshine Coast—Sea to Sky Country, BC

Mr. Speaker, I am proud to pay tribute to one of Canada's most inspiring citizens, my fellow British Columbian, Mr. Rick Hansen.

Despite a terrible car accident that left him paralyzed from the waist down, Rick was able to accomplish the impossible by wheeling across Canada and 33 other countries, covering enough distance literally to circle the globe.

Since that amazing journey, Rick's momentum has not slowed a bit. Canadians watched with pride as Rick became an Olympic hero, both as a gold medal athlete and more recently for his contributions to the Vancouver Olympics and Paralympics.

It has been 25 years since Rick's round-the-world tour, and for this year's special anniversary he has decided to celebrate by repeating his Canadian tour. Following his original 12,000 kilometre path from coast to coast, he will raise awareness, engage communities, celebrate heroes, and leave behind a Canada that is more inclusive and accessible.

I invite all members of the House to join me in paying tribute to this incredible Canadian hero. He has done amazing work for spinal research and shown us all that the human spirit knows no bounds.

Black History Month
Statements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Liberal

Derek Lee Scarborough—Rouge River, ON

Mr. Speaker, as we all know, February 1 marks the beginning of Black History Month, recognizing the innumerable achievements and contributions of black Canadians who have helped build our country from its earliest days into the culturally diverse, compassionate and prosperous Canada we are today.

In celebrating Black History Month today, 90 members from the Children's Breakfast Club are visiting Parliament Hill. The breakfast club is a registered charity that serves a warm, nutritious meal to over 5,000 children a day in the greater Toronto area to start their day.

The group is accompanied by five prominent members from our community who have made valuable contributions to Toronto, Ontario, and Canada, including our former colleague, the Hon. Jean Augustine, Ontario's Fairness Commissioner; and Richard Gosling, the president and founder of the Children's Breakfast Club.

Following question period, a reception is being held in honour of Black History Month in the Centre Block, room 238-S, to recognize this important component of our culture and history. I know that all members will want to join with my constituents in celebrating Canada's Black History Month.

RCMP Heritage Centre
Statements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Conservative

Tom Lukiwski Regina—Lumsden—Lake Centre, SK

Mr. Speaker, the RCMP Heritage Centre is a treasure to all Canadians and one of Saskatchewan's foremost tourism and historical attractions. It educates and inspires Canadians about the historical role of the brave men and women in the RCMP.

However, the previous Liberal government and the member of Parliament for Wascana failed to support the Heritage Centre in preparing a long-term plan to stabilize its operation.

That is why today the Minister of State for Western Economic Diversification announced one-time support that will help provide the Heritage Centre with the time it needs to develop a business plan based on sound business practices. This will ensure that the Heritage Centre can remain a strong part of Regina's cultural landscape and a proud symbol of the RCMP.

Black History Month
Statements By Members

2:10 p.m.

NDP

Peter Stoffer Sackville—Eastern Shore, NS

Mr. Speaker, I am proud to rise on behalf of New Democrats in the House of Commons and from coast to coast to coast to recognize Black History Month.

As members know, people of African descent have helped build this country. In my great riding of Sackville—Eastern Shore, I have the privilege of representing the Preston area. The folks who live in the Preston area can trace their roots back all the way to Mathieu da Costa. It is the largest indigenous black population in Canada.

As well, the Black Cultural Centre in my riding is a tribute to all black Canadians throughout the country. It is an amazing museum of historical facts on what black people have done for our country.

On behalf of all of us in the House of Commons, we wish a special tribute to all African Canadians. We encourage all other Canadians to learn their history and to celebrate Black History Month.

The Economy
Statements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Conservative

Sylvie Boucher Beauport—Limoilou, QC

Mr. Speaker, our main priority is still the economy. The economic recovery remains fragile, and we must focus on job creation and economic growth. This plan, which translates into low taxes, helps more than 110,000 companies that create jobs throughout the country.

The results of this plan are clear: close to 400,000 jobs have been created since July 2009 and the Canadian economy has steadily improved over the past five quarters.

Increasing taxes would be very risky for our economy.

Given that the economic recovery is still fragile, the Canadian Chamber of Commerce is cautioning that the coalition's plan to increase taxes is a disastrous idea. On this side of the House, we are working to strengthen our economy rather than to trigger an unnecessary and costly election.

Electricity
Statements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Bloc

Paule Brunelle Trois-Rivières, QC

Mr. Speaker, Newfoundland and Labrador's efforts to build an underwater cable, using taxpayers' money, in order to sell electricity to the Americans are going full steam ahead. An agreement has been reached with partners from Nova Scotia and a request for as much as $375 million in federal funding has been submitted.

Prince Edward Island would also like to obtain federal funding to build a third underwater cable that would allow electricity to travel between the island and the mainland.

It would be completely unacceptable for the federal government to agree to pay for any of that using Quebec taxpayers' money, when the underwater cable project would mean competition for Hydro-Québec, which pays for its electricity distribution network entirely on its own and has not received a dime from Ottawa.

The Minister of Natural Resources must stop hiding behind PPP Canada to conceal the federal government's intention to fund these projects and ensure that Quebeckers' money is not used to compete unfairly with Quebec.

Senate Appointment
Statements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Liberal

Carolyn Bennett St. Paul's, ON

Mr. Speaker, Larry Smith's appointment to the Senate of Canada after announcing he would run to become a Conservative MP makes a mockery of the Prime Minister's pledge to eliminate Senate patronage and only appoint elected senators.

At the same time the Prime Minister is threatening to eliminate the level playing field for political parties, the Prime Minister is using Canadian tax dollars to pay for the office, telephone and staff of a candidate for the Progressive Conservative Party. This is the most egregious example yet of the government's hypocrisy and abuse of taxpayer dollars.

If Mr. Smith has any idea of fair play or any respect for the taxpayers of Canada, he will choose between the Senate or running for MP in the next federal election, but not both. He must either give up his seat in the Senate or give up on his campaign in Quebec.

The core Canadian value is fairness and what Canadians expect is for Mr. Smith to play fair.

Animal Cruelty
Statements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Conservative

Cathy McLeod Kamloops—Thompson—Cariboo, BC

Mr. Speaker, Canadians are shocked by reports of the sled dog massacre in British Columbia. I know that my colleagues across the floor will join me in condemning this senseless act.

Our government supports the fight against animal cruelty and the need to send a strong and clear message that it is totally unacceptable in our society. That is why our government helped pass Bill S-203 into law during the last Parliament, a bill that increased the maximum penalty to five years for these terrible acts.

The bill also granted judges the discretion to order, as part of a sentence, that a convicted offender be prohibited from owning or residing with an animal for any length of time considered appropriate, up from the previous maximum of two years.

Our government believes that Bill S-203 delivered an added measure of protection for all animals but remains open to future initiatives to combat animal cruelty.

Post-Secondary Education
Oral Questions

2:15 p.m.

Etobicoke—Lakeshore
Ontario

Liberal

Michael Ignatieff Leader of the Opposition

Mr. Speaker, nearly 80% of Canadian families say that they are not sure whether they will be able to afford post-secondary education for their kids. The government has done nothing to help those middle-class Canadian families. Instead, it borrowed $6 billion on top of a $56 billion deficit to lower taxes for the most profitable corporations in the country.

Will the Prime Minister explain why he is borrowing from our kids instead of investing in their education?

Post-Secondary Education
Oral Questions

2:15 p.m.

Calgary Southwest
Alberta

Conservative

Stephen Harper Prime Minister

Mr. Speaker, this government has made unprecedented investments in Canadian families, including tax reductions for those families because we care about the future of Canadian families and we understand on this side of the House that a $6 billion tax hike on employers would hurt job creation and hurt Canadian families.

Post-Secondary Education
Oral Questions

2:15 p.m.

Etobicoke—Lakeshore
Ontario

Liberal

Michael Ignatieff Leader of the Opposition

Mr. Speaker, 16% of our low-income students have to abandon their post-secondary education because of debt. Instead of helping these young people, this government is going to cut the taxes of the largest, most profitable corporations.

Why is it doing this instead of helping young people who would like to attend CEGEP, college or university?

Post-Secondary Education
Oral Questions

2:15 p.m.

Calgary Southwest
Alberta

Conservative

Stephen Harper Prime Minister

Mr. Speaker, the former Liberal government reduced transfers to the provinces for post-secondary education by 25%. This government reduced them by 15%. That is the major difference between our two parties and our two governments.

Canada-U.S. Relations
Oral Questions

2:15 p.m.

Etobicoke—Lakeshore
Ontario

Liberal

Michael Ignatieff Leader of the Opposition

Mr. Speaker, the Prime Minister has announced that he will be going to Washington on Friday to talk to the Americans about something he does not seem to want to talk to Canadians about, and that is a secret perimeter security deal with the United States.

Will he confirm that these negotiations are under way? Will he confirm that is what he will be talking to President Obama about? Will he commit to the House to bring this deal back to the House for an open debate before he surrenders Canadian sovereignty?

Canada-U.S. Relations
Oral Questions

2:15 p.m.

Calgary Southwest
Alberta

Conservative

Stephen Harper Prime Minister

Mr. Speaker, this government will do no such thing. On this side of the House, we are Canadians first and only.

Our relationship with the United States is obviously our most important relationship in the world. It is our closest friend and neighbour. We have a good and productive relationship with the Obama administration and I look forward to having a discussion on a range of issues with President Obama.

Taxation
Oral Questions

February 1st, 2011 / 2:15 p.m.

Liberal

Ralph Goodale Wascana, SK

Mr. Speaker, on corporate tax cuts the government is both bullheaded and wrong, but there is Conservative precedent for flexibility.

Let us look at when the finance minister was in the government of Ontario. In 2001, he announced provincial corporate tax cuts to come into effect two years later. However, in the face of intervening economic difficulty, his government put those tax cuts on hold. The minister applauded that delay, defended that delay and voted for that delay.

Why will he not do the same thing today and invest instead in families?