Madam Speaker, it seems to be a fairly standard procedure for me to end up in adjournment proceedings whenever I ask a question of the Minister of Transport. The purpose of adjournment proceedings is to try and get an answer when you did not get either a full answer or any answer at all during Question Period. That occurs almost every time I pose a question to that minister.
The question that brought me here tonight is can the Minister of Transport advise the House how he justifies denying any Canadian the right of due process? It is not the first time I have asked that question and it is not the first time that the minister has declined to answer.
The minister instead came up with his usual type of rhetoric. One of the comments he made, which of course I have heard before, is that I want to help my friends, that I want to help my Tory friends.
I would deal with that the same way I would deal with it when it has been brought up before. Only 18.5 per cent of those on the Pearson consortium were known to have close Tory ties, while over 50 per cent are known to have close Liberal ties. I have never heard the minister suggest that I am out to help the Liberals, although God knows they could use some help.
What I would ask instead is with regard to due process. How can he justify denying it to any Canadian?
Had the Pearson consortium been made up of American companies or Mexican companies, the minister would have had to give them the right of due process because it is guaranteed under the North American free trade agreement signed by the Liberal government.
Interestingly, the Prime Minister rose in this House in early October and stated for the record that José Salinas Mendoza, a sexual predator who has been deported from this country and is back again now claiming refugee status, has the right to due process.
I had a conversation on air with the chairman of the Standing Committee on Transport who says that is not valid, that is criminal law and we are not dealing in Pearson with criminal law, while the NAFTA argument was civil law.
Civil law or criminal law notwithstanding, it seems that everyone including foreign companies and illegal immigrants have the right of due process. Why will the minister not grant that to Canadians?
This could set a dangerous, unbelievable precedent for all kinds of different companies and organizations throughout Canada that have contracts with government.
Where is the actual break point between what happens with Pearson and what happens with any other company in Canada that has a contract with the government?
The minister said in answer to my question, an alleged answer, that if this thing ends up in the court the court could find that the contract was valid and entered into in good faith, in which case damages would be awarded, and we do not want to pay that money, so consequently we will ban them from the court.
He also said Reform has no respect for the court or the law. On the contrary, we have respect for both of those institutions and, more important, we have respect for all Canadians and their right to due process.
I will repeat my question to the minister, hopefully to get an answer. How do they justify denying the right of due process to any Canadian or Canadian company?