House of Commons Hansard #143 of the 40th Parliament, 3rd Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was conservative.

Topics

Opposition motion—Conduct of the Government
Business of Supply
Government Orders

5:05 p.m.

NDP

Thomas Mulcair Outremont, QC

Mr. Speaker, one of the main functions of a Parliament, in our system of government, is to oversee government spending. Unlike the American system, where there is watertight separation between the executive, the legislature and the judiciary, here the executive also sits in the legislature. Some members of Parliament therefore sit in the cabinet, but they come back here. Together, we all have to decide on how public resources are spent.

The Conservatives had the nerve to say that once something has been studied in cabinet, it becomes a secret and they would speak no more about it. This was an absurdity which obviously was nullified yesterday by the courageous ruling of our Speaker. However that will not prevent them from persisting. The games started again in front of the microphones three seconds later. This is a lack of respect for our democratic institutions. It crosses party lines. It affects all Canadians, and it is now affecting Canada.

Opposition motion—Conduct of the Government
Business of Supply
Government Orders

5:05 p.m.

Mississauga—Erindale
Ontario

Conservative

Bob Dechert Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Justice

Mr. Speaker, I listened intently to my hon. colleague's speech and I did not hear him refer to the comments made by Mr. Robin Sears. His remarks were mentioned several times here today, in fact I mentioned them myself earlier today.

I would like to inform the member, because he may not have been here when I was speaking earlier, that I actually had a personal conversation with Mr. Robin Sears. Mr. Robin Sears is a former national campaign director of the New Democratic Party. He told me that the New Democratic Party did exactly this. It was not just transferring funds from the local level to the national level and back and forth. It was actually transferring funds from the national level to the local level for the purposes of advertising during election campaigns.

I am prepared to swear an affidavit about the comments and the discussions I had with Mr. Sears. I will say clearly what he told me, which is that the New Democratic Party has for many years done exactly what was done in the case we are talking about today.

I wonder if that member would like to comment on those comments.

Opposition motion—Conduct of the Government
Business of Supply
Government Orders

5:05 p.m.

NDP

Thomas Mulcair Outremont, QC

Listen intently to this, Mr. Speaker.

The Minister of Immigration took government property. He thinks it has to do with pieces of paper. Again today in the House he said that he only took a dozen pieces of paper and that he would give $10 back for that. That was the problem.

As if that was the problem, instead of the fact that in his ministerial office, with his ministerial staff, on government property and on government time, he was shilling for his political party with the very groups his office is supposed to help in applying the law. It is about suborning the institutions that we are all here to serve.

With regard to the lobbyist he just talked about, if he knows anything he should do the same thing that happened to his party, which is to take it to the police. However, he will not do that because there is only one party in the House of Commons that has broken the law and it is the Conservative Party.

Opposition motion—Conduct of the Government
Business of Supply
Government Orders

5:05 p.m.

NDP

Charlie Angus Timmins—James Bay, ON

Mr. Speaker, we say that we are proud to stand in this House because this is the House of Commons and the House of Commons is the House of the people of Canada. Unfortunately, however, what we are dealing with in this debate today is that the present regime has decided to undermine and show contempt for the people of Canada through secrecy, through misrepresentation of facts, through perjury at committees, and ministerial roles, to take roles that are supposed to be there to represent all the people and use them as the private stash of the Conservative Party. They are up on criminal charges. A minister has been found in contempt of this House.

However, we cannot blame the poor little staffers that the Conservatives throw to the bus every week when someone gets caught. I am not even blaming the hapless minister. The Prime Minister himself has put his imprimatur on every single thing in this regime and it is time the Prime Minister was held accountable .

Let us look at the Conservatives' behaviour in the in and out scandal. They are acting like every busted crook who has ever walked the planet. They did not do anything wrong. They just have a dispute with the prosecutor. Every guy going to jail has a dispute with the prosecutor.

The people back home need to understand what the Conservatives were doing here. This was an elaborate scheme cooked up by the leaders of the Conservative Party to launder money. They took money from the central campaign and they filtered it quickly through some deadbeat campaign in the middle of Palookaville, Manitoba. Then they got the money back immediately to buy national ads because they were trying to get around the democratically enforced election spending limits.

We now hear them say that everybody did this. That is the other line that all crooks use when they get caught. Everybody wants to know why they are the ones being picked out. There is always a conspiracy as to why they are the poor people caught out. They are the only ones up on charges.

However, this was not just a money laundering scheme. The Conservatives show their contempt by taking the two key buddies who made this and they put them in the Senate. Senator Doug Finley sits there for life. Senator Gerstein is a bagman.

The Conservatives told the people of Canada that they would clean up, that they would do something different. What do they do? They put bagmen and party hacks, like Senator Housakos, in the other house that is supposed to have sober second thought. That line is kind of a misnomer. The Conservatives are using taxpayer money to fund their operation.

Not only did they get caught on this in and out scheme and not only has the Federal Court ruled it quite appropriately as a scheme, but the other piece of the puzzle here was that they enticed local ridings to get kickbacks.

I have many friends who are Conservatives and many Conservatives are honest and they refused to participate. We have Conservative candidates who stood up and said that they would not participate in that illegal action. However, the other ones were enticed by the kickback. Because they flowed the money through their bank accounts and took it out, the local riding association was able to go to the taxpayer of Canada to claim receipts that it was not eligible for. Maybe it raised only $9,000 or $10,000 in a campaign but then it walked out with a cheque for $30,000. Even the mob could not give that kind of return on an investment. This is what caught them out. They thought they were flying high. This is exactly like something we would see in Panama.

All these dead dog riding associations that could hardly even find candidates to run, started asking for the kickback they were entitled to. Elections Canada looked at it and said that it was a criminal act.

Canadians look to government to set a certain standard but what do they find with the government? Whenever the government is accused and it needs to do the right thing, it refuses to stand up and be accountable. It hides the evidence. It prorogues and shuts down. It attacks Elections Canada. It is time the government was held--

Opposition motion—Conduct of the Government
Business of Supply
Government Orders

5:10 p.m.

Conservative

The Deputy Speaker Andrew Scheer

Order, please. It being 5:15 p.m., it is my duty to interrupt the proceedings and put forthwith every question necessary to dispose of the business of supply.

The question is on the motion. Is it the pleasure of the House to adopt the motion?

Opposition motion—Conduct of the Government
Business of Supply
Government Orders

5:10 p.m.

Some hon. members

Agreed.

No.

Opposition motion—Conduct of the Government
Business of Supply
Government Orders

5:10 p.m.

Conservative

The Deputy Speaker Andrew Scheer

All those in favour of the motion will please say yea.

Opposition motion—Conduct of the Government
Business of Supply
Government Orders

5:10 p.m.

Some hon. members

Yea.

Opposition motion—Conduct of the Government
Business of Supply
Government Orders

5:10 p.m.

Conservative

The Deputy Speaker Andrew Scheer

All those opposed will please say nay.

Opposition motion—Conduct of the Government
Business of Supply
Government Orders

5:10 p.m.

Some hon. members

Nay.

Opposition motion—Conduct of the Government
Business of Supply
Government Orders

5:10 p.m.

Conservative

The Deputy Speaker Andrew Scheer

In my opinion the yeas have it.

And five or more members having risen:

Call in the members.

(The House divided on the motion, which was agreed to on the following division:)

Vote #202

Business of Supply
Government Orders

5:55 p.m.

Liberal

The Speaker Peter Milliken

I declare the motion carried.

Message from the Senate
Government Orders

5:55 p.m.

Liberal

The Speaker Peter Milliken

I have the honour to inform the House that a message has been received from the Senate informing this House that the Senate has passed Bill S-13, An Act to implement the Framework Agreement on Integrated Cross-Border Maritime Law Enforcement Operations between the Government of Canada and the Government of the United States of America, to which the concurrence of the House is desired.

It being 5:56 p.m., the House will now proceed to the consideration of private members' business, as listed on today's order paper.

The House proceeded to the consideration of Bill C-452, An Act to amend the Competition Act (inquiry into industry sector), as reported (without amendment) from the committee.