House of Commons Hansard #140 of the 40th Parliament, 3rd Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was arrest.

Topics

Political Financing
Oral Questions

2:20 p.m.

Ottawa West—Nepean
Ontario

Conservative

John Baird Leader of the Government in the House of Commons

Mr. Speaker, let me tell the deputy leader of the Liberal Party that at least no one in this party has had to write a cheque for $1 million back to the taxpayers that they stole when they were in office.

Government Communications
Oral Questions

2:20 p.m.

Liberal

Marc Garneau Westmount—Ville-Marie, QC

Mr. Speaker, from coast to coast to the Canadarm in space, the identity of the Government of Canada is subject to strict, non-partisan rules. It is that identity, which belongs to all Canadians, that the Prime Minister is attacking. Once again, he is disregarding existing rules. He is acting as though he were above the law.

In fact, is that not the problem, that the Prime Minister thinks that he is the government?

Government Communications
Oral Questions

2:20 p.m.

Okanagan—Coquihalla
B.C.

Conservative

Stockwell Day President of the Treasury Board and Minister for the Asia-Pacific Gateway

Mr. Speaker, there has been no change. This is a practice used by many governments. We will continue to use the term “Government of Canada”. It is not uncommon for governments to use this practice.

Government Communications
Oral Questions

2:20 p.m.

Liberal

Marc Garneau Westmount—Ville-Marie, QC

Mr. Speaker, Canadians are immensely proud of their country and rightly so, but the Conservatives do not seem to share in that pride. It is no longer the “Government of Canada”, but the government of the Prime Minister's last name. It is a government of only one, for only one and by only one.

Is this what the Prime Minister meant when he said that by the time he was finished we would no longer recognize Canada? Why does the Prime Minister think he is more important than Canada?

Government Communications
Oral Questions

2:20 p.m.

Okanagan—Coquihalla
B.C.

Conservative

Stockwell Day President of the Treasury Board and Minister for the Asia-Pacific Gateway

Mr. Speaker, there has been no change of policy or practice. It is not uncommon at all to see governments use various terms. A quick search of the various Internet sources show at least 109 references used by the Liberals. As a matter of fact, a term was used by the leader of the former government, a term that was endorsed by the clerk of the Privy Council, Mr. Mel Cappe, and also the president of the Privy Council.

Political Financing
Oral Questions

2:20 p.m.

Bloc

Gilles Duceppe Laurier—Sainte-Marie, QC

Mr. Speaker, the Minister of Immigration said his staff's use of parliamentary letterhead for partisan fundraising was a minor administrative mistake. Yet it was the minister who told a member of his office staff, who is paid by taxpayers, to conduct this targeted fundraising.

Will the Minister of Immigration admit that he was behind this partisan fundraising carried out with government resources and that he must take responsibility and resign?

Political Financing
Oral Questions

2:20 p.m.

Calgary Southeast
Alberta

Conservative

Jason Kenney Minister of Citizenship

Mr. Speaker, it is obviously completely inappropriate to use government resources to raise funds for any political party. That is why I accepted responsibility as soon as I learned of this administrative mistake by my office. My political assistant offered his resignation and I accepted. I subsequently contacted the ethics commissioner and you, Mr. Speaker. I apologize for this mistake, and we have taken corrective action.

Political Financing
Oral Questions

2:25 p.m.

Bloc

Gilles Duceppe Laurier—Sainte-Marie, QC

Mr. Speaker, that is a little too easy. When it is time to cut ribbons, the minister is responsible. He takes responsibility, he struts about, and he says that he made the decision. But, when he breaks the rules, it is no longer his fault, it is the fault of his assistants. He is never responsible for that. He cannot have it both ways. Ministerial responsibility is always applicable. He made a mistake, he is responsible, he should resign.

Political Financing
Oral Questions

2:25 p.m.

Calgary Southeast
Alberta

Conservative

Jason Kenney Minister of Citizenship

Mr. Speaker, my office's standard practices were not followed in this case. As soon as I learned of it, I took steps to correct the situation. My political assistant submitted his resignation and I accepted. I personally informed you and the ethics commissioner as soon as I became aware of the situation. It is obviously inappropriate, and I apologize for the mistake made in my absence. I believe that this is the end of this story.

Citizenship and Immigration
Oral Questions

March 7th, 2011 / 2:25 p.m.

Bloc

Thierry St-Cyr Jeanne-Le Ber, QC

Mr. Speaker, the problem with the minister of immigration is that he is confusing his obligations towards newcomers with the partisan interests of the Conservative Party. It is preposterous that the minister responsible for processing all immigration applications is involved in a pre-election communications plan targeting certain ethnic groups.

How can we believe that the Conservatives' electoral and racial profiling will not be used as a framework for government policies, since they are orchestrated by the same minister?

Citizenship and Immigration
Oral Questions

2:25 p.m.

Calgary Southeast
Alberta

Conservative

Jason Kenney Minister of Citizenship

Mr. Speaker, this government is proud of the progress it has made in responding to the aspirations and values of new Canadians and members of our cultural and ethnic communities. This government cut the Liberals' head tax in half. This government tripled funding to establishment services for newcomers. This government issued an apology for the head tax charged to Chinese Canadians. And that is not all. We are proud of our record when it comes to new Canadians.

Citizenship and Immigration
Oral Questions

2:25 p.m.

Bloc

Thierry St-Cyr Jeanne-Le Ber, QC

Mr. Speaker, one of the Minister of Immigration's responsibilities is to appoint citizenship judges as well as members of the Immigration and Refugee Board. These people must make decisions and examine cases based on merit, not the Conservative government's partisan interests.

How can we believe in their neutrality, knowing that the minister who chose them has drawn up a short list of communities to woo?

Citizenship and Immigration
Oral Questions

2:25 p.m.

Calgary Southeast
Alberta

Conservative

Jason Kenney Minister of Citizenship

Mr. Speaker, this government introduced a new process for appointing and pre-screening IRB members. Of the people applying to become IRB members, 90% are not recommended to the minister. Only 10% are recommended. Since becoming minister, I have recommended to Cabinet the appointment of about 130 IRB members. I know that one of them had ties to the Conservative Party.

Political Financing
Oral Questions

2:25 p.m.

NDP

Thomas Mulcair Outremont, QC

Mr. Speaker, we are beginning to see the extent of the Conservative Party's electoral fraud. For example, in 2006, in Hull—Aylmer, actual local campaign expenses totalled $12,000; however, the refund received from taxpayers' money totalled $34,000. In other words, an illegal refund was received for three times the actual campaign expenses.

For years, the Conservatives have been calling on the Liberals to pay back the money from the sponsorship scandal. It is now the Conservatives' turn to tell taxpayers when they are going to pay back the money they stole through their system of electoral fraud.

Political Financing
Oral Questions

2:25 p.m.

Nepean—Carleton
Ontario

Conservative

Pierre Poilievre Parliamentary Secretary to the Prime Minister and to the Minister of Intergovernmental Affairs

Mr. Speaker, clearly the premise of the question is wrong. In actual fact, Conservative Party candidates spent Conservative money on Conservative ads. The national party transferred funds to local candidates. The reason why Elections Canada knows about it is that we told them. Why not? It is legal, it is ethical and all the parties do it on a regular basis. We have defended our case before the courts and will continue to do so.