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Crucial Fact

  • His favourite word is deal.

NDP MP for Vancouver Kingsway (B.C.)

Won his last election, in 2011, with 50.10% of the vote.

Statements in the House

Petitions October 23rd, 2014

Mr. Speaker, the third petition calls on the Government of Canada to do whatever it can to ensure home mail delivery for all Canadians who want it, particularly the disabled and the elderly, who require direct home mail delivery.

Petitions October 23rd, 2014

Mr. Speaker, the second petition is signed by dozens of people in Vancouver Kingsway who are calling on the government to implement a national public transit strategy.

The petitioners want permanent investment to support public transit and want federal funding mechanisms established for it in our country.

Petitions October 23rd, 2014

Mr. Speaker, I have a number of petitions to introduce today.

The first petition is signed by hundreds of Canadians who represent the Canadian Kurdish population and who are concerned about the events in Kurdistan and the threats to the Kurdish people there.

The petitioners call upon Canada to do whatever it can to support the Kurdish people diplomatically and militarily by means of intelligence and arms.

Petitions October 6th, 2014

Mr. Speaker, I have a petition signed by 2,000 residents of Montreal, principally in the riding of LaSalle—Émard, asking the Minister of Citizenship and Immigration to reconsider the decision to deport the Fuh-Cham family of Montreal.

Mr. Fuh-Cham, his wife and three young children have been active community members in LaSalle, specifically the Saint Jean Brebeuf Church, for seven years. They are facing imminent deportation to Cameroon, where they face grave risk of persecution because of their Christian faith. In particular, the family fears the women and girls would be subjected to forced genital mutilation.

The undersigned in this petition are asking that the minister reconsider the deportation of the Fuh-Cham family scheduled for October 9, 2014, and allow them to remain in Canada where they can freely practise their religious beliefs and continue to contribute to Canadian society.

International Trade October 1st, 2014

Mr. Speaker, that does not say anything about whether Germany will ratify the deal.

What Canadians want is an explanation of why taxpayers' dollars were blown to treat European bureaucrats like royalty. We know that the last-minute decision to fly the EU delegation back to Europe cost over $300,000, but what about the security costs incurred by the RCMP when they were told to deliver them to a cocktail party in Toronto? How much in total did this poorly planned photo op cost Canadian taxpayers?

International Trade October 1st, 2014

Mr. Speaker, we now hear that the Europeans may not include investor state provisions in their trade agreement with the United States. The question, then, is why are Conservatives so adamant that it be in the deal for Canada, especially when it means that the U.S. would get a better deal and Germany may never ratify CETA?

Canada-Korea Economic Growth and Prosperity Act September 30th, 2014

Mr. Speaker, I rise on a point of order. The hon. member went on and on about the New Democrats not standing in this place and not voting for an agreement, and he challenged us to prove him wrong. I have the Journals from Monday, March 5, 2012, and I would like to table this document showing the New Democrats stood in the House and voted in favour of the Canada-Jordan agreement at second reading. Where he is confusing it is that, at third reading, we let that agreement go by a voice vote, which happens all the time in the House. As a matter of fact, we understand that the Liberals have sent a request to New Democrats to allow the South Korea agreement to pass by a voice vote.

The hypocrisy and the inaccuracy of the Liberal Party is again breathtaking. I would ask for unanimous consent to table this document in the House, so that the member will once and for all be quiet and no longer state that the New Democrats have not stood in the House and voted for the Jordan agreement, because we did.

Moreover, maybe he can answer a question. Besides the Liberals not supporting the free trade agreement in the 1980s—he prattles on and on about how the Liberals have always supported free trade, but Canadians remember they did not—the Liberal trade critic has said this about CETA:

We have been supportive of the deal from the start....

It's important to say this is a great step, but also we really need to start seeing some details. At some point though we need to see what it is we're actually supporting

Now is that not a classic description of the Liberal Party to support something without ever reading it, or—

Canada-Korea Economic Growth and Prosperity Act September 24th, 2014

Mr. Speaker, when speaking about the Canada-EU trade agreement, the Liberal trade critic said:

We have been supportive of the deal from the start. It’s important to say this is a great step, but also we really need to start seeing some details. At some point though we need to see what it is we’re actually supporting.

It begs this question. Why is it that the Liberals are willing to support trade deals before they even read them or see the details?

My question is about democracy. My hon. colleague mentioned favourably that Korea is a democracy, yet the Liberals supported a free trade agreement with Honduras, where the democratically elected government was overthrown by a coup, where journalists are regularly killed, where the LGBT community is persecuted, and where human rights are brazenly violated. They also supported the China FIPA, which has all sorts of problems in many other respects as well.

I am just wondering if my hon. colleague could name a single country with which the Liberals would not support signing a trade agreement.

Canada-Korea Economic Growth and Prosperity Act September 24th, 2014

Mr. Speaker, I do agree with that. When the government took office in 2006, Canada had a current account surplus of about $18 billion, and today it has a current account deficit of some $64 billion. So there has been about an $80 billion swing to the negative since the government came to power. I think that is because the government has taken an ideological approach to trade. Conservatives will sign any trade agreement with anybody, regardless of the terms, without taking a strategic, thoughtful approach to trade policy. New Democrats believe that we should take a thoughtful strategic approach, with balanced trade agreements that will benefit the Canadian economy. New Democrats would support those agreements if they do, and will oppose them if they do not.

Canada-Korea Economic Growth and Prosperity Act September 24th, 2014

Mr. Speaker, I agree with my hon. colleague that it is regrettable and, in fact, wrong that the House did not have an opportunity to debate the Canada-China FIPA. Certainly the New Democrats brought forth a motion and devoted one of our opposition days to that very subject. We also moved motions before the trade committee to have that committee study it. Unfortunately, that was not accepted by the government. So the New Democrats have used every tool we have in the House to try to get a debate on that important deal.

We believe that all trade agreements, including FIPAs that govern investment, ought to be debated in the House. In the case of trade agreements, they usually require enabling legislation. That is why we are debating this, as these agreements must come before the House because they require legislative amendments. FIPAs often do not require legislative amendments, which is why cabinet has the ability to pass them. But as a matter of policy and good governance, both FIPAs and trade agreements should come before the House for thorough scrutiny and debate before Canada commits to them.