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House of Commons Hansard #149 of the 37th Parliament, 2nd Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was c-46.

Topics

Child PornographyOral Question Period

3 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

Myron Thompson Canadian Alliance Wild Rose, AB

Mr. Speaker, last week the House totally agreed that all defences for child pornography that exploit children must be eliminated. The pride of the justice minister will not allow him to amend Bill C-20 to incorporate this change.

Why will the minister not swallow his pride, do the democratic thing and ban all defences for child pornography?

Child PornographyOral Question Period

3 p.m.

Outremont Québec

Liberal

Martin Cauchon LiberalMinister of Justice

Mr. Speaker, I really do not understand from where the member is coming. Last week during the debate, for example, they said that, of course, police forces should have access to child pornography in the course of an investigation. They said as well that, of course, police forces should have access for training purposes and, of course, scientists should have access for valid reasons as well.

I would like to say to the House that the defence of “of course” does not exist within the criminal law. This is why we have to put in a defence that will be charter compliant, while protecting our children.

EthicsOral Question Period

3 p.m.

Progressive Conservative

Joe Clark Progressive Conservative Calgary Centre, AB

Mr. Speaker, my question is for the Minister of Finance. Did the minister submit to the ethics counsellor the records of payments for his trip with Sandy Morrison? Did he recuse himself from cabinet discussions about budget provisions which helped Canada's major breweries to the detriment of micro-breweries?

EthicsOral Question Period

3 p.m.

Ottawa South Ontario

Liberal

John Manley LiberalDeputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance

No, Mr. Speaker.

Presence in GalleryOral Question Period

3 p.m.

The Speaker

I draw the attention of hon. members to the presence in the gallery of the right hon. Paul Murphy, MP, Secretary of State for Northern Ireland.

Presence in GalleryOral Question Period

3 p.m.

Some hon. members

Hear, hear.

Presence in GalleryOral Question Period

3 p.m.

The Speaker

I would also draw the attention of hon. members to the presence in the gallery of Ms. R. Eleanor Milne, who was the Dominion Sculptor from 1962 to 1993 and was responsible for the stone carvings in the foyer of the House of Commons entitled, the “History of Canada Series”.

Presence in GalleryOral Question Period

3 p.m.

Some hon. members

Hear, hear.

Point of OrderOral Question Period

3 p.m.

Bloc

Michel Gauthier Bloc Roberval, QC

Mr. Speaker, I rise on a point of order. Earlier, you made a ruling relating to a question that had been asked. I would like to request some further information from you. There are two separate aspects to my point of order.

The first is the following. Last March, the Minister of Finance made a decision in his budget. That ministerial decision was unfavourable to the microbrewers' association and favourable to the major breweries. Not long after, he went on a sailing vacation with family members and members of the Brewers Association. So, last week, we asked the minister, given the potential for conflict of interest, whether this trip had been provided free of charge within the framework of his duties, as was common practice at the time, or whether he had paid. You allowed the minister to respond and his response was that he had paid the cost of his trip in full.

It is our impression, however, that what the minister paid for was his plane fare. As for the sailing vacation itself, today we merely asked the Minister of Finance, as a supplementary question, how much he had paid the person who provided this trip to reimburse him for its value. The Minister of Industry was asked the same question several weeks ago, and it was allowed.

It seems to us that it is important to know and that we have the right to ask a minister who went on a trip that could place him in an apparent conflict of interest situation whether or not he paid for that trip and how much. I would say that is a minimum. What is good for the industry minister should be good for the finance minister, even if we are talking about larger amounts.

Second, and this is of some concern to me, when questioned about this, instead of answering through the official channel, since you had risen, we very clearly saw the minister tell us in this House, “Fuck off”.

It seems to me that it is somewhat unparliamentary for a finance minister to answer this kind of question in such a despicable way. Is the question so terrible? Is that how dismayed the minister is to have to reveal how much he spent for this cruise with his family on the Caribbean, along with people from the Brewers Association, whom he had just favoured in his budget?

We do not know. But we are perfectly justified by political morals to ask this kind of question. I would therefore appreciate it if you could explain how the question about details on costs was in order when asked of the industry minister but not when asked of the finance minister. This is tied closely to decisions he made in his last budget and to a possible breach of ethics and conflict of interest. It seems to me that we can inquire.

Point of OrderOral Question Period

3:05 p.m.

The Speaker

Does the hon. member for Wild Rose wish to speak on the same topic?

Point of OrderOral Question Period

3:05 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

Myron Thompson Canadian Alliance Wild Rose, AB

Mr. Speaker, I want to verify that what the member has just said to you with regard to what happened today indeed did happen. I saw it mouthed very clearly. I think it is absolutely disgraceful that even that kind of thought would go on in this place.

Point of OrderOral Question Period

3:05 p.m.

The Speaker

With regard to the comments by the hon. member for Roberval concerning the question, I should immediately say that it was a question about details, that is, the exact cost of a trip or something like that. Such a question should be placed on the Order Paper. It is perfectly proper to ask the question by means of that document.

For example, as I recall the events, the question asked of the Minister of Industry was whether the minister had received something valued at over $200 or less than that amount. That is a different question. But asking for the details about the exact amount of something is another question that could be put on the Order Paper.

With regard to the other issues raised, clearly I did not hear anything said by the minister or anyone else. Since the hon. members say this occurred in the House, undoubtedly the Minister of Finance will be able to explain it later. He is not here right now, but I am sure he will be briefed on the point of order raised by the hon. member for Roberval and confirmed by the hon. member for Wild Rose. We shall have an answer shortly.

Order in Council AppointmentsRoutine Proceedings

3:05 p.m.

Halifax West Nova Scotia

Liberal

Geoff Regan LiberalParliamentary Secretary to the Leader of the Government in the House of Commons

Mr. Speaker, I am pleased to table, in both official languages, a number of order in council appointments made recently by the government.

Government Response to PetitionsRoutine Proceedings

November 3rd, 2003 / 3:05 p.m.

Halifax West Nova Scotia

Liberal

Geoff Regan LiberalParliamentary Secretary to the Leader of the Government in the House of Commons

Mr. Speaker, pursuant to Standing Order 36(8), I have the honour to table, in both official languages, the government's response to 10 petitions.

Income Tax ActRoutine Proceedings

3:05 p.m.

Progressive Conservative

Gerald Keddy Progressive Conservative South Shore, NS

moved for leave to introduce Bill C-463, an act to amend the Income Tax Act.

Mr. Speaker, it gives me great pleasure today to introduce my fishers' capital gains deferral act to the House of Commons, seconded by the member for St. John's West.

The bill would amend the Income Tax Act by extending the rollover relief allowable in the transfer of farm property to cases where a taxpayer transfers fishing property or assets in order to facilitate keeping those assets within a family. In other words, it is my intent that the bill would help preserve the financial integrity of small to moderate family fishing operations and make it easier to keep a successful business in the family.

I urge the House to support Bill C-463 once it receives first reading.

(Motions deemed adopted, bill read the first time and printed)

Committees of the HouseRoutine Proceedings

3:10 p.m.

Liberal

Peter Adams Liberal Peterborough, ON

Mr. Speaker, if the House gives its consent, I move:

That the Supplementary Opinions of the Bloc Québécois and the New Democratic Party be appended to the 52nd report of the Standing Committee on Procedure and House Affairs presented to the House on Thursday, October 30, 2003.

Committees of the HouseRoutine Proceedings

3:10 p.m.

The Speaker

The hon. member for Peterborough seems to be holding something in front of him which I am not able to see but it looks like a prop. As chairman of the procedure and House affairs committee he should be setting a very good example for all hon. members. He knows that holding up a prop is not appropriate, but I know his interest is in the subject of his intervention.

Is there unanimous consent for the hon. member to propose the motion?

Committees of the HouseRoutine Proceedings

3:10 p.m.

Some hon. members

Agreed.

Committees of the HouseRoutine Proceedings

3:10 p.m.

The Speaker

Is it the pleasure of the House to adopt the motion?

Committees of the HouseRoutine Proceedings

3:10 p.m.

Some hon. members

Agreed.

(Motion agreed to)

PetitionsRoutine Proceedings

3:10 p.m.

Liberal

Paul Szabo Liberal Mississauga South, ON

Mr. Speaker, I have three petitions to present to the House today.

The first petition deals with the legislation regarding the definition of marriage. The petitioners would like to draw to the attention of the House that marriage is the best foundation for families and for raising children. They call upon Parliament to reintroduce into legislation the institution of marriage as being the lifelong union of one man and one woman to the exclusion of all others.

PetitionsRoutine Proceedings

3:10 p.m.

Liberal

Paul Szabo Liberal Mississauga South, ON

Mr. Speaker, the second petition I wish to present is on the subject matter of stem cells.

The petitioners point out that Canadians support ethical stem cell research which has already shown encouraging potential to provide cures and therapies for Canadians. They petition Parliament to focus its legislative support on adult stem cell research to find those cures and therapies.

PetitionsRoutine Proceedings

3:10 p.m.

Liberal

Paul Szabo Liberal Mississauga South, ON

Mr. Speaker, the final petition is with regard to the notwithstanding clause relating to the definition of marriage.

The petitioners point out that notwithstanding the decision of June 10, 2003 of the Ontario Court of Appeal which struck down the definition of marriage as being unconstitutional, they call upon Parliament to invoke the notwithstanding clause so that the traditional definition of marriage is retained, that being the legal union between one man and one woman to the exclusion of all others.

PetitionsRoutine Proceedings

3:10 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

Darrel Stinson Canadian Alliance Okanagan—Shuswap, BC

Mr. Speaker, I am pleased to present a petition today on the definition of marriage.

The petitioners are requesting that the Government of Canada hold a binding national referendum together with the next general election to ask the following question: Must the Government of Canada continue to define marriage as the union of one man and one woman to the exclusion of all others, yes or no?

PetitionsRoutine Proceedings

3:10 p.m.

NDP

Svend Robinson NDP Burnaby—Douglas, BC

Mr. Speaker, from another perspective I have the honour to present a petition which is signed by hundreds of residents of British Columbia. They point out that same sex couples form loving and committed relationships but are denied the equal ability to celebrate those relationships through marriage. They point out that the protection of true family values requires that all families be respected equally. They point to their concern that the Charter of Rights and Freedoms be upheld. They suggest that denying same sex couples the equal right to marry reinforces attitudes of intolerance and discrimination and is inconsistent with the Canadian values of equality, dignity and respect.

The petitioners call upon Parliament to enact legislation providing same sex couples with the equal right to marry.