House of Commons Hansard #75 of the 41st Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was firearms.

Topics

Questions on the Order Paper
Routine Proceedings

10:10 a.m.

Some hon. members

Agreed.

Bill C-19—Time Allocation Motion
Ending the Long-gun Registry Act
Government Orders

February 7th, 2012 / 10:10 a.m.

York—Simcoe
Ontario

Conservative

Peter Van Loan Leader of the Government in the House of Commons

Madam Speaker, I move:

That, in relation to Bill C-19, An Act to amend the Criminal Code and the Firearms Act, not more than one further day shall be allotted to the consideration at report stage of the bill and two sittings days shall be allotted to the consideration at third reading stage of the said bill; and

That, 15 minutes before the expiry of the time provided for government orders on the day allotted to the consideration at report stage and on the second day allotted to the consideration at third reading stage of the said bill, any proceedings before the House shall be interrupted, if required for the purpose of this order, and in turn every question necessary for the disposal of the stage of the bill then under consideration shall be put forthwith and successively without further debate or amendment.

Bill C-19—Time Allocation Motion
Ending the Long-gun Registry Act
Government Orders

10:10 a.m.

NDP

The Deputy Speaker Denise Savoie

Pursuant to Standing Order 67.1, there will now be a 30-minute question period. I invite all hon. members who wish to ask questions to rise in their places so the Chair has some idea of the number of members who wish to participate.

As is the custom, as Chair I will give preference to the opposition but will recognize some members from the government side.

The hon. member for Windsor—Tecumseh.

Bill C-19—Time Allocation Motion
Ending the Long-gun Registry Act
Government Orders

10:10 a.m.

NDP

Joe Comartin Windsor—Tecumseh, ON

Madam Speaker, I must admit that I was a bit surprised today by the government House leader having to read this motion. He has done it so many times, I would have thought he could have simply stood and, from memory, repeated the same motion.

Since this Parliament started, we have had one closure motion and we are now seeing our 13th time allocation motion. There have been 12 since Parliament returned in September of last year. As always, every time this happens it is a new record for the government.

We really need to wonder what the government is so scared of in terms of the debate. I think this is the first time, however, that the motion puts time allocation both on report stage and on third reading. We have not even had any indication from the government as to when time will be allocated on the calendar for third reading.

I wonder if the minister could tell us when the debate on third reading will start?

Bill C-19—Time Allocation Motion
Ending the Long-gun Registry Act
Government Orders

10:10 a.m.

Provencher
Manitoba

Conservative

Vic Toews Minister of Public Safety

Madam Speaker, I will leave that issue to the government House leader.

With respect to the debate on this particular issue, we have debated this issue both in the House of Commons and in coffee shops across the country for the past 17 years.

I recall when the hon. Allan Rock came to see me when I was the provincial attorney general in Manitoba and tried to compel the Province of Manitoba to enforce his long gun registry. I made it very clear to him then, back in about 1997 or 1998, that we would not do that. In fact, the Manitoba government has consistently not enforced the long gun registry. The NDP Manitoba government knows that it is a waste of time and money. It is focused on real crime, as is this government, rather than treating law-abiding hunters, farmers and sports shooters as criminals.

Bill C-19—Time Allocation Motion
Ending the Long-gun Registry Act
Government Orders

10:15 a.m.

NDP

Chris Charlton Hamilton Mountain, ON

Madam Speaker, I think the Minister of Public Safety just basically made the point himself. What is the rush? The issue has been around since 1997. In 2006, we started debating the issue in this House. Why do we need a time allocation motion?

I am glad the minister is answering instead of the government House leader because I will remind him of some things he said in this House.

In 2001, the Minister of Public Safety said:

For the government to bring in closure and time allocation is wrong. It sends out the wrong message to the people of Canada. It tells the people of Canada that the government is afraid of debate, afraid of discussion and afraid of publicly justifying the steps it has taken.

What else did the minister say? On a separate occasion, again in 2001, he said:

Mr. Speaker, yesterday the Prime Minister of Canada swung an axe across the throat of parliament. ... If the bill was the right thing to do, why did the Prime Minister do the wrong thing by invoking closure?

What has changed?

Bill C-19—Time Allocation Motion
Ending the Long-gun Registry Act
Government Orders

10:15 a.m.

Conservative

Vic Toews Provencher, MB

Madam Speaker, I find it astounding that the member would ask what has changed in respect to this issue. We have been debating it for 17 years. That is almost as long as some of the members across the way are old.

I have patience. I have argued this issue for a long time. What the member is suggesting is that perhaps we wait another 17 years.

This is the real rationale behind the NDP members' strategy here. They are deliberately, on every criminal bill, trying to get the government to invoke closure so they can say that it is a new record. The real record is their obstinacy in terms of passing criminal legislation that would actually protect victims and get criminals.

Bill C-19—Time Allocation Motion
Ending the Long-gun Registry Act
Government Orders

10:15 a.m.

Liberal

Kevin Lamoureux Winnipeg North, MB

Madam Speaker, what is noteworthy here is the fact that the government has really taken a rule and, I would argue, has abused the rule and the privileges of members of this assembly.

What the government continuously does, and it is becoming a procedure, is introduce legislation and soon thereafter brings in time allocation. I am not as much concerned about the subject of this bill as I am offended that the government House leader, who, I would argue, is likely the worst government House leader we have seen for many years inside this chamber because of his inability to negotiate agreements between the other House leader, reverts to, time and time again, shutting down and limiting debate inside this chamber by bringing in time allocation.

Is it the government's intention to use time allocation as a standard procedure in order to wind up debate on all the different types of legislation before this House?

Bill C-19—Time Allocation Motion
Ending the Long-gun Registry Act
Government Orders

10:15 a.m.

Conservative

Vic Toews Provencher, MB

Madam Speaker, it is interesting to note that the member, after being in the House for a year and a half, has now indicated that our House leader is the worst he has ever seen. That is quite an experience to rely on. In fact, I have to say that our House leader is a very patient man, a very decent man, a very honourable man. The type of comment made by the member is uncalled for. I know the member for Winnipeg North is much more of a gentleman than to make that type of comment.

In respect of the use of time allocation, he knows the issue of the long gun registry has been around for at least 17 years. We have debated this in every election. We have made it clear in every election that we would get rid of the long gun registry.

I know what happened in my own riding, which was held by a Liberal who in fact even voted against the long gun registry. It was not enough to save him back in 2000 because the people of rural Canada and indeed in suburbia and in the downtown of cities understand that this is not a system that works.

Bill C-19—Time Allocation Motion
Ending the Long-gun Registry Act
Government Orders

10:20 a.m.

NDP

Linda Duncan Edmonton—Strathcona, AB

Madam Speaker, with all due respect, I find the comments by the minister to be very offensive to the democratic standards in this country.

We are seeing around the world people in nations rising up and asking to be governed by the rule of law, to institute real democracy.

We hear the hon. member across the way state the case that the nation should be run based on a party's election platform.

Bill C-19—Time Allocation Motion
Ending the Long-gun Registry Act
Government Orders

10:20 a.m.

Some hon. members

Oh, oh!

Bill C-19—Time Allocation Motion
Ending the Long-gun Registry Act
Government Orders

10:20 a.m.

NDP

Linda Duncan Edmonton—Strathcona, AB

Madam Speaker, the hon. member seems to find this to be very humorous.

Bill C-19—Time Allocation Motion
Ending the Long-gun Registry Act
Government Orders

10:20 a.m.

Conservative

Vic Toews Provencher, MB

It is humorous.

Bill C-19—Time Allocation Motion
Ending the Long-gun Registry Act
Government Orders

10:20 a.m.

NDP

The Deputy Speaker Denise Savoie

Order, please. I would like a bit of order in the House.

The hon. member for Edmonton—Strathcona will conclude her question.

Bill C-19—Time Allocation Motion
Ending the Long-gun Registry Act
Government Orders

10:20 a.m.

NDP

Linda Duncan Edmonton—Strathcona, AB

Madam Speaker, in a nation governed by the rule of law, the laws are made by the duly elected members in debates in the elected House. Last May we only had an election of the new members of this House. That side of the House should be giving due respect to our democratic parliamentary system, wherein we have committed in this country to show the world that this is how we are running our nation and others should watch us, that we make the rules of how we govern our nation based on the debate in the House by the duly elected officials.

I implore the minister to start referencing our system of Parliament in this country.