House of Commons Hansard #87 of the 41st Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was trade.

Topics

41st General Election
Oral Questions

2:30 p.m.

NDP

Charlie Angus Timmins—James Bay, ON

Mr. Speaker, we are talking about electoral fraud. We asked very specific questions about the shenanigans in Thunder Bay, and the Conservatives' response was, “Catch us if you can.” We asked again and they said, “We just changed the polling stations,” but no polling stations were changed.

Yesterday the Conservatives said it was a smear. Now that the police are investigating, will they come clean with who in the Conservative Party is behind the hijinks in Thunder Bay?

41st General Election
Oral Questions

2:30 p.m.

Peterborough
Ontario

Conservative

Dean Del Mastro Parliamentary Secretary to the Prime Minister and to the Minister of Intergovernmental Affairs

Mr. Speaker, in a letter to the editor, Diane Janzen, the Liberal candidate in Chilliwack—Fraser Canyon, indicated that they used First Contact and “First Contact relies on patented technology....The patent and the server are based in the U.S.”

We have heard a number of people come forward and suggest that there were calls made, and that these calls were made on behalf of the Liberal Party and that those calls originated in the U.S. In fact, we heard such a statement about Ottawa West—Nepean yesterday. What we can say is that Anita Vandenbeld paid $21,000 to First Contact to make calls for her campaign.

If they said they were calling on behalf of the Liberal Party and asked for these things, they were.

41st General Election
Oral Questions

2:30 p.m.

NDP

Charlie Angus Timmins—James Bay, ON

Mr. Speaker, my hon. colleague is spending so much time trying to sing the golden oldies of Tricky Dick he did not listen to the question, which was about the shenanigans in Thunder Bay.

When the Conservatives were caught out in Guelph, they tried to throw a 20-year-old under the bus and blame him for an elaborate scheme, which is now apparently not working.

We will go back to the fact that there is an investigation into Thunder Bay. Will the member come clean? Will he talk about their role in Thunder Bay, or are the Conservatives going to try to throw RMG under the bus to try to hide the crooks in the Conservative Party?

41st General Election
Oral Questions

2:30 p.m.

Peterborough
Ontario

Conservative

Dean Del Mastro Parliamentary Secretary to the Prime Minister and to the Minister of Intergovernmental Affairs

Again, Mr. Speaker, this party ran a clean and ethical election campaign. Those are nothing but unsubstantiated smears from the NDP. Canadians will have no tolerance for that type of behaviour.

We know the Liberal Party has claimed that a number of calls were made into its ridings, often late at night. These calls sometimes offended people. The callers indicated that they were calling on behalf of the Liberal Party. They were asking for things like lawn signs. It turned out that they were in fact calling on behalf of the Liberal Party, at least that is what it appears.

41st General Election
Oral Questions

2:35 p.m.

NDP

Alexandrine Latendresse Louis-Saint-Laurent, QC

Mr. Speaker, he is quite right that Canadians will not tolerate that kind of attitude.

It makes no difference whether we hand over all our information to Elections Canada, because it does not have the power to ask political parties for documents. It seems that the Conservatives did not appreciate being caught using the in and out scheme. The message this sends to Canadians is that the Conservatives absolutely do not want the Chief Electoral Officer to be able to discover other scandals.

Why are the Conservatives refusing to give Elections Canada the power it is asking for? What do they have to hide?

41st General Election
Oral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Nepean—Carleton
Ontario

Conservative

Pierre Poilievre Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Transport

Mr. Speaker, my colleague is asking why. Because we have already given the evidence to Elections Canada. It has all the documents pertaining to this situation. We are ready to co-operate by answering all questions. It is the opposition that is making unfounded allegations. After a week of attacks and allegations, they should have some proof. They lost the election and now they are making false allegations to justify losing.

41st General Election
Oral Questions

2:35 p.m.

NDP

David Christopherson Hamilton Centre, ON

Mr. Speaker, the member just said that they were willing to co-operate with the Chief Electoral Officer, but a question remains. If they are interested in ensuring that all evidence necessary is brought forward, why did they refuse to give the authority that they requested of the Chief Electoral Officer to demand any documents they need to ensure that everybody here is being honest? If they are not willing to give him that power, which they have now proven they are not, what else are they hiding?

41st General Election
Oral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Peterborough
Ontario

Conservative

Dean Del Mastro Parliamentary Secretary to the Prime Minister and to the Minister of Intergovernmental Affairs

Mr. Speaker, in a letter to the editor, written by Diane Janzen, a Liberal candidate in Chilliwack—Fraser Canyon, she indicated that First Contact relies on patented technology. The patent and server are based in the U.S.

I read a story just a few minutes ago out of the riding of Northumberland—Quinte West about an individual who had received numerous annoying phone calls from a caller indicating the call was on behalf of Liberal candidate Kim Rudd. Kim Rudd, in fact, paid $11,300 to First Contact to conduct research work in that riding. It turns out—

41st General Election
Oral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Conservative

The Speaker Andrew Scheer

The hon. member for Rimouski-Neigette—Témiscouata—Les Basques.

Service Canada
Oral Questions

2:35 p.m.

NDP

Guy Caron Rimouski-Neigette—Témiscouata—Les Basques, QC

Mr. Speaker, election fraud on one hand and the in and out scheme on the other. And now, the Ethics Commissioner is investigating the relocation of the employment insurance processing centre from Rimouski to Thetford Mines, an investigation that directly targets the Minister of Industry. The Conservatives could save us a lot of time and money by answering our questions.

Did the Minister of Industry use his influence to have Service Canada jobs moved to his riding or not?

Service Canada
Oral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Haldimand—Norfolk
Ontario

Conservative

Diane Finley Minister of Human Resources and Skills Development

Mr. Speaker, the hon. member for Mégantic—L'Érable was very clear: the member's allegations are unfounded and unsubstantiated. No decision was made about the new offices in Thetford Mines during the consolidation of employment insurance activities. These decisions were made by Public Works employees as part of a clear, transparent and fair process.

Service Canada
Oral Questions

2:35 p.m.

NDP

Guy Caron Rimouski-Neigette—Témiscouata—Les Basques, QC

Mr. Speaker, the Minister of Industry is so afraid of what will be revealed that he is threatening to take me to court. It makes me think of RackNine.

The minister boasted to a local newspaper that he lobbied to have the employment insurance processing offices in Rimouski moved to his riding. Now, he is saying that he had nothing to do with the decision to transfer these offices, which according to the same article are to be located in a building in Thetford Mines belonging to his former and his father's current associate. Nevertheless, the Ethics Commissioner is investigating. We want to know if he interfered.

Will the minister finally tell us the truth, or do we have to wait for the results of the investigation?

Service Canada
Oral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Haldimand—Norfolk
Ontario

Conservative

Diane Finley Minister of Human Resources and Skills Development

Mr. Speaker, these allegations are unfounded and are not based on any evidence. All of the decisions about where the employment insurance offices would be located were made by Public Works and Government Services Canada employees as part of a regular, transparent, fair and competitive process.

Asbestos
Oral Questions

2:40 p.m.

NDP

François Lapointe Montmagny—L'Islet—Kamouraska—Rivière-du-Loup, QC

Mr. Speaker, perhaps the minister thinks that moving an employment insurance processing centre to his constituency is a transition plan for asbestos.

Yesterday, La Presse reported that, between 2005 and 2010, more than 45% of work-related deaths in Quebec were associated with asbestos. An industry that is no longer socially acceptable clearly has no future. Out of simple respect for his office and for his fellow citizens, the minister must come up with an answer that is different from the same old tune about safe handling.

What is preventing the Minister of Industry from announcing an economic transition plan? Is the reason that he has sunk to courting votes or that he has no influence in his caucus?

Asbestos
Oral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Mégantic—L'Érable
Québec

Conservative

Christian Paradis Minister of Industry and Minister of State (Agriculture)

Mr. Speaker, the Government of Canada has been promoting the safe use of chrysotile for more than 30 years. Recent scientific studies prove that chrysotile can be safely used in a controlled environment.