House of Commons Hansard #89 of the 41st Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was veterans.

Topics

Veterans Affairs
Statements By Members

2:15 p.m.

NDP

Irene Mathyssen London—Fanshawe, ON

Mr. Speaker, last week, I had the privilege of travelling to St. John's and Halifax with the veterans affairs committee to study the delivery of front line health and well-being services to our Canadian vets. We heard from Jim Lowther and David MacLeod about the unacceptable and preventable tragedy of homeless veterans.

The very least that presenters should have from elected officials is a respectful and attentive ear. After all, is the goal not to ensure that the heroes who served our country so faithfully receive the care and help they need?

I was appalled by the disrespect and inattention of committee members on the government side. Sleeping was not the only affront. Others laughed inappropriately or wandered in and out of the room with more attention to a Blackberry than to the people who had taken their time to come out and speak.

A late and grudging apology just does not cut it. Our veterans and all Canadians deserve better. After witnessing what I did last week, I wonder what action the Conservatives will take to honour all of our veterans--

Veterans Affairs
Statements By Members

2:15 p.m.

Conservative

The Speaker Andrew Scheer

The hon. member for Prince George—Peace River.

Liberal Party of British Columbia
Statements By Members

2:15 p.m.

Conservative

Bob Zimmer Prince George—Peace River, BC

Mr. Speaker, last weekend's Vancouver Province described a photo of the interim Liberal leader and Liberal loyalist, Jaspal Atwal.

I will share with the House the rap sheet on Mr. Atwal. Mr. Atwal was convicted of the attempted murder of Malkiat Singh Sidhu in 1986. He even admitted to pulling the trigger. He was also charged with the beating of former Liberal MP Ujjal Dosanjh in 1985. Someone should tell Terry Milewski at CBC.

I wonder what Mr. Dosanjh thinks about the interim Liberal leader being photographed with Mr. Atwal.

Mr. Atwal's Liberal connections run even deeper. In the 2011 election campaign, he helped bankroll the Liberal Party's campaign in Fleetwood—Port Kells. Is the interim Liberal leader going to defend his friend, Jaspal Atwal? Is the interim Liberal leader now so focused on the relentless pursuit of power that he will associate with anyone for an easy vote, even a convicted criminal like Jaspal Atwal?

41st General Election
Oral Questions

March 5th, 2012 / 2:15 p.m.

Hull—Aylmer
Québec

NDP

Nycole Turmel Leader of the Opposition

Mr. Speaker, I would like to give this government the opportunity to set the record straight with regard to the fraudulent phone calls. Last week, the Prime Minister stated that only the Liberal Party made such calls from the United States. Now, we have learned that the Conservative Party also made calls from the United States and that it used American companies.

Will the Prime Minister and the government apologize for misleading Canadians?

41st General Election
Oral Questions

2:15 p.m.

Nepean—Carleton
Ontario

Conservative

Pierre Poilievre Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Transport

Mr. Speaker, a number of things are clear: the opposition cannot accept the results of the last election. The Liberals paid millions of dollars to make calls to hundreds of thousands of voters, and they hired American companies to make many of those calls. Now, the members of the opposition are trying to make exaggerated and unfounded claims to explain why Canadians did not vote for them in the last election.

41st General Election
Oral Questions

2:15 p.m.

Hull—Aylmer
Québec

NDP

Nycole Turmel Leader of the Opposition

Mr. Speaker, this government must stop blaming others, take responsibility for once and shed some light on this scandal.

The Prime Minister said that the calls in question were calls that the Conservative Party of Canada made to its supporters, calls to inform people of changes in polling stations. However, there were no changes in polling stations in most of the ridings.

Can the Prime Minister and his government explain this today?

41st General Election
Oral Questions

2:20 p.m.

Nepean—Carleton
Ontario

Conservative

Pierre Poilievre Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Transport

Mr. Speaker, the hon. member has not provided any evidence to support her allegations. They are exaggerated and unfounded claims that demean the millions of voters who exercised their right to vote during the election. Voters, Canadians, gave us a very strong mandate. That is democracy. That is reality. The opposition should learn to accept it.

41st General Election
Oral Questions

2:20 p.m.

Hull—Aylmer
Québec

NDP

Nycole Turmel Leader of the Opposition

Mr. Speaker, the reality is that the Conservatives said they never used U.S. companies, but that is not true and we know it now. Calls were made telling voters about polling station changes in ridings where there were none. Thirty-one thousand individuals contacted Elections Canada. That is the reality.

Now Conservative MPs are blaming Elections Canada for this mess. Does the government realize Canadians are losing confidence in this process? Do you care?

41st General Election
Oral Questions

2:20 p.m.

Conservative

The Speaker Andrew Scheer

I would just remind the hon. member to address her comments to the Chair, not directly at her colleagues.

41st General Election
Oral Questions

2:20 p.m.

Peterborough
Ontario

Conservative

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

Mr. Speaker, I can confirm to the Leader of the Opposition that the speaker cares deeply.

I would also say to the Leader of the Opposition that what the Prime Minister said last week was absolutely 100% accurate. The Conservative Party and our callers were all out of Canada; all the calls came from Canada. What the member is alleging is absolutely false. The stories were in fact false. No voter ID calls were made from the U.S. on behalf of the Conservative Party.

What we can also say is that the Liberal Party paid millions of dollars to contact hundreds of thousands of voters right across the country. It appears it may have given them some wrong information.

41st General Election
Oral Questions

2:20 p.m.

NDP

Pat Martin Winnipeg Centre, MB

Mr. Speaker, I am holding a picture from the website of RackNine owner Matt Meier holding a Government of Canada cheque that says “for some services rendered”. The only problem is there is no public record of this payment to RackNine.

I ask the government, what exactly were the services rendered by RackNine to the Conservative government and which government departments? Were these tendered contracts or sole-sourced contracts? Will the government table in the House all records of all invoices and contracts between the Government of Canada, any department, and RackNine?

41st General Election
Oral Questions

2:20 p.m.

Peterborough
Ontario

Conservative

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

Mr. Speaker, of course, the member may have some issues with RackNine and they may be personal issues.

What we can say very clearly is the opposition is having a very difficult time accepting the results of the last election. What we know, and these are the facts, is the Liberal Party paid millions of dollars to contact hundreds of thousands, I would argue probably millions, of voters right across the country. It appears it may have given them some incorrect information.

These exaggerated allegations demean the voters of this country.

41st General Election
Oral Questions

2:20 p.m.

NDP

Pat Martin Winnipeg Centre, MB

Mr. Speaker, another photo from Matt's website shows an impressive stack of servers that he calls his political superweapon.

We know the Conservative Party paid for the services of this political superweapon during the last general election, because we have the invoices for that, but why would the Conservative government be buying the services of a political superweapon?

Why would Canadian tax dollars be going to hire a high tech political superweapon, and who did the government intend to use that political superweapon against?

41st General Election
Oral Questions

2:20 p.m.

Peterborough
Ontario

Conservative

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

Mr. Speaker, the Conservative Party does in fact have a political superweapon. He is from the riding of Whitby—Oshawa. He is the Minister of Finance of this country.

He has led this country through one of the most challenging economic circumstances that we have ever witnessed, and he has done so in a fashion that Canadians from coast to coast to coast have endorsed. That is why so many voters voted in support of the Conservative Party.

What is clear and factual in this case is that the Liberals spent millions of dollars to contact hundreds of thousands of Canadians, and it appears they may have given them some incorrect information.

Phone Calls to Mount Royal Constituency
Oral Questions

2:25 p.m.

Liberal

Bob Rae Toronto Centre, ON

Mr. Speaker, one thing we do know for certain is that after the election there was a poll taken in the riding of the member for Mount Royal by Campaign Research Inc., in which it was said that the member for Mount Royal was in fact stepping down.

The Speaker of the House in ruling on that question said that the taking of that poll, which was apparently authorized by the Conservative Party, was reprehensible. Does the government agree that in fact that tactic is reprehensible?