House of Commons Hansard #235 of the 41st Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was veterans.

Topics

Telecommunications Industry
Oral Questions

3 p.m.

Conservative

The Speaker Andrew Scheer

Order. The hon. member for Thunder Bay—Superior North now has the floor.

Telecommunications Industry
Oral Questions

3 p.m.

Independent

Bruce Hyer Thunder Bay—Superior North, ON

Mr. Speaker, the government's feeble wireless policies are headed for failure. All three of Canada's small wireless companies are up for sale, owing to an unlevel playing field. Unchecked, Canada's theree big telecoms will grab the last 9% of the market, guaranteeing higher prices and worse service.

Will the minister protect consumers and block such a sale? Will he limit the auction of new spectrum to only new players?

Telecommunications Industry
Oral Questions

April 18th, 2013 / 3:05 p.m.

Mégantic—L'Érable
Québec

Conservative

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

Mr. Speaker, of course we are standing up for consumers. We want to enhance competition and investment in this country, and this is why we adopted this policy back in 2008 for the AWS spectrum.

Let me say that the price went down by an average of 11% since then, and we will continue this way with the 700 megahertz spectrum. We launched consultation with the industry to make sure that we enhance competition and provide better choice and better rates for our consumers.

Presence in Gallery
Oral Questions

3:05 p.m.

Conservative

The Speaker Andrew Scheer

I would like to draw to the attention of hon. members the present in the gallery of Her Excellency Dr. Maia Panjikidze, Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Georgia.

Presence in Gallery
Oral Questions

3:05 p.m.

Some hon. members

Hear, hear!

Presence in Gallery
Oral Questions

3:05 p.m.

Conservative

The Speaker Andrew Scheer

I know we have the normal Thursday question, but there is a point of order arising out of question period, I believe, from the hon. Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Finance.

Oral questions
Points of Order
Oral Questions

3:05 p.m.

Saint Boniface
Manitoba

Conservative

Shelly Glover Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Finance

Mr. Speaker, I do not often rise on points of order, but I just cannot remain seated after hearing what the member for St. Paul's screamed out in one of her uncontrolled outbursts, which we hear time and time again in question period.

When the Minister for Status of Women was speaking, the member for St. Paul's was disrespectful in the words she used to try to indicate that aboriginal women who do not have the same rights as other Canadian women ought to go and find shelters as opposed to getting the same rights as all the women here have.

I would suggest, Mr. Speaker, because of the out-of-control outburst by that member every single day, that you might consider putting a camera that way so that when we make points of order, you can actually discipline her for once.

Oral questions
Points of Order
Oral Questions

3:05 p.m.

Liberal

Carolyn Bennett St. Paul's, ON

Mr. Speaker, I apologize for the outburst, but I believe that it should be on record that the Conservative government has refused to fund shelters on reserves at the levels of other shelters and that—

Oral questions
Points of Order
Oral Questions

3:05 p.m.

Some hon. members

Oh, oh!

Oral questions
Points of Order
Oral Questions

3:05 p.m.

Conservative

The Speaker Andrew Scheer

I believe the hon. member for Skeena—Bulkley Valley has the Thursday question.

Business of the House
Oral Questions

3:05 p.m.

NDP

Nathan Cullen Skeena—Bulkley Valley, BC

Mr. Speaker, I have the honour to rise to ask the Leader of the Government in the House of Commons the usual Thursday question about what is on the agenda for the rest of this week and for next week.

This week's calendar has once again shown the utter lack of a plan from the government. Of the five days the House was sitting, four have been assigned as opposition days.

Yesterday, the one day the Conservatives actually chose to debate government legislation, they demonstrated once again their total lack of respect and fundamental disregard for Parliament and democracy by shutting down debate after only a few hours.

This was, in fact, the 31st time, in this Parliament alone, the government used the guillotine of shutting down debate, setting the all-time record for any government in Canadian history, in only two years.

The pace the Conservatives are on right now is that once every seven days, the government moves a motion to shut down debate on some bill or another.

Perhaps we will have a chance to discuss the new bill announced earlier this week. This bill has to do with the NDP motion presented on a previous opposition day calling on the government to amend the Canada Elections Act to prohibit tactics like the ones used in Guelph in 2011 aimed at suppressing votes.

As soon as the Conservatives announced that this new electoral reform act was coming, they had to immediately announce that they had to scrap that same plan, as they discovered so many flaws in their own legislation.

This may be reminiscent for Canadians, because they had to change fundamental mistakes in their own immigration bill, Bill C-31. They never even got to Bill C-30, the Internet snooping bill. It never saw the light of day. The Conservatives had to wait until its omnibus crime bill got to the Senate before they could fix the fundamental flaws, because they so rushed it through this place with closure.

The government is totally out of ideas and out of gas. I beg the hon. House leader across the way to give us something, anything, that shows us that the Conservatives are doing something for hard-working families and Canadians in our economy.

Business of the House
Oral Questions

3:10 p.m.

York—Simcoe
Ontario

Conservative

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

Mr. Speaker, the opposition House leader expressed concern that the scheduling of several opposition days, on which the opposition gets to determine the subject matter of debate in the House of Commons, showed a complete absence of a plan and a complete absence of any ideas for policy innovation. Having heard the debate and the resolutions coming from the opposition for debate on those days, I am inclined to agree with him.

Sadly, they have shown that when the opposition has the agenda, there are no new ideas and there is nothing of value spoken. However, the Standing Orders do require us to have those opposition days scheduled as part of our procedure, and that is what we are doing.

I would like, however, to respond a little bit to his comments on the time allocation on the bill yesterday. Yesterday's bill was Bill S-2, a bill to give aboriginal women and their children on reserve the same matrimonial rights that other people have. It is a bill that has been in Parliament for five years, through a series of Parliaments, in fact, and it has not yet come to a vote. To paraphrase the President of the United States in the recent State of the Union address, the aboriginal women and children of Canada deserve the right to a vote. That is why we did what we had to do, after five years of obstruction from the opposition preventing the bill from coming forward.

The bill would provide the protection they have been denied for decades. It is truly shameful that, starting with the Leader of the Opposition, every single opposition member stood up against this bill at second reading. They voted against the principle of protecting aboriginal women and children and providing them with rights equal to those of all Canadian women off reserve. They voted against giving them protection from violence in the situation of a domestic family breakdown and giving them the same rights to matrimonial homes that other women have had for decades in this country.

It is another example of how the NDP approaches things. It claims that it is for women's rights and aboriginal rights, but when it comes time to actually take action, it does not. It is “do as I say, not as I do”.

This afternoon we will continue the New Democrats' opposition day. Tomorrow is the fourth allotted day, when the New Democrats will again propose our topic for debate. Monday shall be the fifth allotted day, which will see a Liberal motion debated. Tuesday shall be the sixth allotted day, with a further New Democratic motion being considered.

Next week is victims week in Canada, so on Wednesday, the House will continue the second reading debate on Bill C-54, the not criminally responsible reform act, which aims to put the protection of society and of victims front and centre.

On Thursday morning we will consider Bill C-48, the technical tax amendments act, 2012, at report stage. After question period on Thursday, we will start report stage for Bill C-52, the fair rail freight service act, which was reported back from the transport committee this morning.

Finally, next Friday, Bill C-15, the strengthening military justice in the defence of Canada act, will be again considered at report stage.

Oral Questions
Points of Order
Oral Questions

3:10 p.m.

Liberal

Rodger Cuzner Cape Breton—Canso, NS

Mr. Speaker, during question period on Tuesday, in response to a question I posed to the Minister of Human Resources and Skills Development, the minister made reference to a letter I had sent in support of the temporary foreign worker program. We have had an opportunity in the office to go back through all records and saw no such correspondence.

In an attempt to try to put some truth to this issue, I ask the minister to table that letter.

Mr. Speaker, does the member have to respond to the request to table such a document?

Oral Questions
Points of Order
Oral Questions

3:10 p.m.

York—Simcoe
Ontario

Conservative

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

Mr. Speaker, the hon. member is a member of some standing in the House. He raised the subject earlier in the week. The member is aware of the rules. It is quite clear that if one quotes or reads from a document, there may be a requirement for tabling. However, simply indicating that one has a document in one's possession and that it exists does not give rise to an obligation to table. That being said, the minister certainly has the right to table it at some point if she sees fit.

Oral Questions
Points of Order
Oral Questions

3:15 p.m.

Liberal

Kevin Lamoureux Winnipeg North, MB

Mr. Speaker, just as a courtesy, when a member stands in his or her place and waves a document around implying that it is a letter, and a member of Parliament is not 100% sure and questions whether the letter was sent, there is some obligation for a minister or member to at least demonstrate that he or she is not just throwing a name or a piece of paper around.

There has to be some sort of accountability. Otherwise, any member could stand up and say that he or she has a letter from so and so. I am sure that the government House leader will look into the matter, and if there was, in fact, a letter, the member will provide some assurance that it exists. That would be the proper thing to do.