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House of Commons Hansard #38 of the 39th Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was crime.

Topics

Canada-U.S. RelationsOral Questions

2:30 p.m.

Liberal

Raymonde Folco Liberal Laval—Les Îles, QC

Mr. Speaker, we on this side of the House started talks with U.S. authorities a long time ago. Nevertheless, I would like to ask a supplementary question.

The Canada-U.S. border is the linchpin of the most important trade relationship in the world. Every day, more than $1.9 billion dollars worth of goods and more than 300,000 people cross the world's longest undefended border. Making passports mandatory would be bad for business, industry and tourism.

When will the minister stop taking orders from his Republican idols? Will he defend Canada's immigration and border security systems?

Canada-U.S. RelationsOral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Okanagan—Coquihalla B.C.

Conservative

Stockwell Day ConservativeMinister of Public Safety

Mr. Speaker, I agree with the member's statement that free trade with the United States is important. More than 85% of our trade is with the United States.

That is why members of the U.S. administration have assured us that they will work with us to create a process to develop trade and continue trading freely, which will be good for our citizens and good for business.

Oil CompaniesOral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Bloc

Paul Crête Bloc Montmagny—L'Islet—Kamouraska—Rivière-du-Loup, QC

Mr. Speaker, last week the Minister of Industry said that the Bloc wanted gas prices to be regulated. Hon. members know this is the responsibility of Quebec and the provinces. That is not what we are asking him.

Nonetheless, one of the reasons for the increased price at the pump is the significant increase in refinery profits, which are increasing for all oil companies at the same time and often coincide with an increase in the price of crude.

The recent Competition Bureau investigation aside, how can the minister explain that the oil companies are taking advantage of the increase in the price of crude to increase and justify their huge refinery profit margin?

Oil CompaniesOral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Beauce Québec

Conservative

Maxime Bernier ConservativeMinister of Industry

Mr. Speaker, my hon. colleague should know that the price at the pump increases and decreases according to international price fluctuations and the price per barrel of oil. It should be noted that today, the price at the pump is 30% lower than it was in the 1980s, when the Liberal Party implemented the national energy program.

The price is quite high again these days, but it fluctuates. The most important thing for us is that we will cut the GST on July 1, which will have an impact on the price at the pump.

Oil CompaniesOral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Bloc

Paul Crête Bloc Montmagny—L'Islet—Kamouraska—Rivière-du-Loup, QC

Mr. Speaker, the reality is that the previous government and the current Conservative government never agreed to take measures to limit increases in the refinery profit margin, which, in 2005, saw price variations of over 700%.

Why does this government refuse to protect consumers? Why is it siding with the major oil companies at the consumers' expense? What is behind all this?

Oil CompaniesOral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Beauce Québec

Conservative

Maxime Bernier ConservativeMinister of Industry

Mr. Speaker, it is not right to say that this government prefers one industry over another. In the last budget, we implemented tax cuts for all industries in Canada. We cut capital gains taxes. We cut the GST; a cut that will be implemented shortly, on July 1. This will have repercussions on consumers. We are quite pleased with this record.

HealthOral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Bloc

Michel Gauthier Bloc Roberval—Lac-Saint-Jean, QC

Mr. Speaker, my question is for the Minister of Health.

The price of nitric oxide, which is used to treat babies with respiratory problems, has jumped 400%. By approving only a single product, Health Canada has eliminated competition overnight, which has caused the price to jump.

How can the minister explain the fact that the Patented Medicine Prices Review Board has allowed the price to increase by 400%, knowing of the monopoly held by the American company?

HealthOral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Charleswood—St. James—Assiniboia Manitoba

Conservative

Steven Fletcher ConservativeParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Health

Mr. Speaker, the Patented Medicine Prices Review Board is an independent quasi-judicial agency. Its mandate is to regulate the prices of all patented medicines pursuant to the Patent Act and to ensure they are not excessive.

I understand that the prices, with regard to this material, are reviewed on an ongoing basis. Since it is an arm's length body, we will be watching, but it is independent from the government

HealthOral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Bloc

Michel Gauthier Bloc Roberval—Lac-Saint-Jean, QC

Mr. Speaker, in November 2004, the Europeans faced the same problem, the same price increase for the same product, and they did not hesitate for an instant before taking action. They launched inquiries into the drug industry's abuse of its dominant position.

This government has been in power for four and a half, nearly five months. The problem is not a new one. When will the government follow the European example and protect consumers?

HealthOral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Charleswood—St. James—Assiniboia Manitoba

Conservative

Steven Fletcher ConservativeParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Health

Mr. Speaker, as I mentioned, this is a quasi-judicial agency and should it find that the price of patented medicines sold in Canada is excessive, it has the power to roll back the price to the non-excessive level and to collect any excess revenue that may have occurred.

That is the process and we will follow that process.

National DefenceOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Liberal

Ujjal Dosanjh Liberal Vancouver South, BC

Mr. Speaker, the government has refused to engage in any debate in the House regarding the C-17 purchase. However, the Minister of Foreign Affairs, appearing before the defence committee, made it seem a fait accompli.

Would the Minister of National Defence inform the House and his colleague, the foreign minister who should be interested in the sovereignty of our country, whether it is true that these aircraft would be maintained and repaired by the Americans and would not be able to fly where the Americans would not want them to fly?

National DefenceOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Carleton—Mississippi Mills Ontario

Conservative

Gordon O'Connor ConservativeMinister of National Defence

Mr. Speaker, no decision has been made on equipment. When a decision is made the House will be informed if it is in session and the public will be informed of that decision.

National DefenceOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Liberal

Ujjal Dosanjh Liberal Vancouver South, BC

Mr. Speaker, considering the serious questions parliamentarians must ask concerning the purchase of the C-17, could the Minister of National Defence commit to announcing the airlift acquisition only when the House is sitting so we can ask those questions on behalf of all Canadians, including the 75,000 aerospace workers in Canada?

National DefenceOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Carleton—Mississippi Mills Ontario

Conservative

Gordon O'Connor ConservativeMinister of National Defence

Mr. Speaker, I really must be dealing with the Forest Gump of critics.

The government will make a decision on any aircraft or any other purchases when it is appropriate and then the decisions will be announced.

National DefenceOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Liberal

Denis Coderre Liberal Bourassa, QC

Mr. Speaker, the Bush government wants to officially stop purchasing Boeing C-17 planes by 2008. It wants to free up funds for its own priorities. Clearly, Washington no longer needs Boeing C-17s.

However, Congress and military lobbyists—people who the current minister knows very well—want to apply pressure to continue procurement representing $3 billion per year and 30,000 jobs in 42 American states. Washington needs help.

Has the Prime Minister already discussed the purchase of these planes with his patron and mentor, President Bush? If yes, what has he promised him?

National DefenceOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Calgary Southwest Alberta

Conservative

Stephen Harper ConservativePrime Minister

Mr. Speaker, the answer is no. We have never discussed these purchases with the United States. These are our decisions alone to make.

National DefenceOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Liberal

Denis Coderre Liberal Bourassa, QC

Mr. Speaker, I imagine that on Tuesday and Wednesday evenings, the Minister of National Defence watches Republican Idol rather than Canadian Idolor Star Académie.

Even the United States will stop buying the C-17 after 2008, as mentioned recently in a Pentagon report.

Given that the Conservative government is preparing to hand over $4.5 billion to our southern neighbours and that, to my knowledge, the only person here who salivates at the mention of the Pentagon is our current Minister of National Defence, will the latter choose to protect Canadian interests or to help his Republican idols?

National DefenceOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Carleton—Mississippi Mills Ontario

Conservative

Gordon O'Connor ConservativeMinister of National Defence

Mr. Speaker, I do not know how many times I have to say this but we have made no decision. However, I want to point out that in 13 years the previous government only approved three projects: used submarines, light armoured vehicles and the maritime helicopter. That is the performance of that government.

Canada Elections ActOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Conservative

Ken Epp Conservative Edmonton—Sherwood Park, AB

Mr. Speaker, under the previous Liberal government we saw waste, corruption and the misuse of taxpayer money.

Canadians are pleased that this government is working to put in guidelines that will clean up the mess left by the Liberals. One such change is to restrict to $1,000 the donation that an individual can make to political parties. Corporate and union donations will be banned completely.

There are Liberal members, such as the member for Notre-Dame-de-Grâce—Lachine, who are now complaining that this is somehow a direct attack on the Liberal Party.

Could the President of the Treasury Board explain to the opposition and to Canadians why these changes are necessary?

Canada Elections ActOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Ottawa West—Nepean Ontario

Conservative

John Baird ConservativePresident of the Treasury Board

Mr. Speaker, as its first piece of legislation, the government is trying to clean up the ethical mess left by the previous administration. One of the best ways to do that was to limit individual contributions to $1,000 and ban corporate cash, union donations and, most important, ban the type of shakedown of children we have seen from members on the front benches of the Liberal Party.

Lobbyists Registration ActOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

NDP

Pat Martin NDP Winnipeg Centre, MB

Mr. Speaker, the Prime Minister has belatedly realized that the revolving door between his transition team and lobby firms is wrong.

Why does he not apply that same cooling off period to his war room veterans, people like Reynolds, Norquay, Baran and Boessenkool. It seems that they slammed the door shut only after all their inside buddies were firmly set up in the big lobby firms.

The Conservatives said that they would put a stop to the Liberal legacy of political influence peddling. Why are there such glaring inconsistencies in the application of Tory principles when it comes to lobbying?

Lobbyists Registration ActOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Ottawa West—Nepean Ontario

Conservative

John Baird ConservativePresident of the Treasury Board

Mr. Speaker, I thank the member for his hard work on getting Bill C-2 through committee so we can have real accountability mechanisms in place as soon as possible.

The bottom line is that the Prime Minister made real and meaningful commitments to stop the revolving door between government and lobbying firms and that is exactly what we have done in Bill C-2.

For the first time ever, there will be a five year ban. We promised to include unpaid advisors and, with the amendments proposed by the government, Bill C-2 would do exactly that.

Canada Elections ActOral Questions

June 12th, 2006 / 2:45 p.m.

NDP

Pat Martin NDP Winnipeg Centre, MB

Mr. Speaker, it seems that Apotex is not the only corporation playing fast and loose with the Canada Elections Act.

We have now learned that the TD Canada Trust has seen fit to pull a volpe and violate the donations limit of the act. These people must think that illegal is just a sick bird.

I would like to ask both the Liberals and the Conservatives if they intend to give these donations back but I know I am not allowed to. Instead I will ask what the government intends to do to ensure both the spirit and the letter of the law are respected when it comes to donations under the Canada Elections Act.

Canada Elections ActOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Ottawa West—Nepean Ontario

Conservative

John Baird ConservativePresident of the Treasury Board

Mr. Speaker, the first thing the government wants to do is to get the federal accountability act passed into law so we can end these big $5,000 contributions and cap the amount at $1,000 to ensure there is not just integrity but that honest government is seen to done by the Canadian people.

That is something we committed to do, that is something we have before the House of Commons today and that is something we will ask the House to consider before we adjourn for the summer break.

Foreign AffairsOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Liberal

Keith Martin Liberal Esquimalt—Juan de Fuca, BC

Mr. Speaker, government MPs have been critical on the creation of the International Criminal Court, demeaning its usefulness because countries such as the United States and China do not support it. This is at a time when the court is prosecuting some of the world's most violent despots.

Does the government fully support the International Criminal Court, yes or no?