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House of Commons Hansard #9 of the 39th Parliament, 2nd Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was bills.

Topics

Elections CanadaOral Questions

11:40 a.m.

York—Simcoe Ontario

Conservative

Peter Van Loan ConservativeLeader of the Government in the House of Commons and Minister for Democratic Reform

Mr. Speaker, we have made it clear on many occasions that all our financing activities are legal. There is no scandal here. If there was any hint of a scandal, if the Liberals believed anything that they are saying, on Wednesday they would have voted to have an election. They did not. They chose to give the government a mandate to government. That is because they do not believe their own questions.

Elections CanadaOral Questions

11:40 a.m.

Liberal

Pablo Rodriguez Liberal Honoré-Mercier, QC

Mr. Speaker, the Canada Elections Act is clear: if a candidate claims an expense, he or she must have incurred that expense. What part of this do they not understand? Conservative candidates are telling us that their party gave them money because it allowed the headquarters campaign to exceed the legal limits. Really. I see a problem here. Clearly, they must have understood this.

The government in this case had two choices: obey the law or act in its own interests. It chose to act in its own interests. Will the government now agree to obey the law?

Elections CanadaOral Questions

11:40 a.m.

York—Simcoe Ontario

Conservative

Peter Van Loan ConservativeLeader of the Government in the House of Commons and Minister for Democratic Reform

Mr. Speaker, the Liberals had a choice. If they took their allegations seriously, they could have acted as if they took their allegations seriously. They had a choice on Wednesday and they made that choice.

Clearly, they do not believe their own allegations on this, and the reason they do not believe it is because this party is clean. All our activities follow the law. They have in the past and they will in the future.

The EnvironmentOral Questions

11:40 a.m.

Conservative

Dean Del Mastro Conservative Peterborough, ON

Mr. Speaker, yesterday our Prime Minister made a historic announcement by protecting over 10,000 square kilometres of Lake Superior, including the lakebed, islands and north shore lands. This will become the largest freshwater marine protected area in the world.

The World Wildlife Fund, Prince Philip, and local first nations are all in agreement that this is the right thing to do.

Can the Minister of the Environment please expand on why yesterday's announcement was a great day for Canada?

The EnvironmentOral Questions

11:40 a.m.

Ottawa West—Nepean Ontario

Conservative

John Baird ConservativeMinister of the Environment

Mr. Speaker, the World Wildlife Fund said yesterday that standing up and protecting Lake Superior made for a superior day for the environment in this country. I could not agree more.

Previous governments studied this issue, did reports, had consultations, but they never acted. Yesterday, we acted to save and protect 10,000 square kilometres of Lake Superior for conservation for future generations. We are acting and we are working to get the job done.

The most important part is we worked in concert with the government of Dalton McGuinty. Now there is a real partnership.

AfghanistanOral Questions

11:40 a.m.

NDP

Dawn Black NDP New Westminster—Coquitlam, BC

Mr. Speaker, in a display designated to demonstrate who is really in charge of the war, the Chief of the Defence Staff made an impromptu visit to Kandahar. He stated clearly that Canada should be in Afghanistan for another 10 years.

I have two questions. First, did General Hillier inform the defence minister of his plans or did he inform the Prime Minister? Second, why is the assessment of the war by General Hillier so wildly different than that of the government in its own throne speech?

AfghanistanOral Questions

11:45 a.m.

Edmonton Centre Alberta

Conservative

Laurie Hawn ConservativeParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of National Defence

Mr. Speaker, this government has been clear. We continue to be clear. It was passed in the throne speech which was endorsed by the Liberals.

Building the capacity of the Afghan people to look after themselves is going to take a long time and there is no question about that. We believe it can be done by 2011 at the end of the Afghanistan contract.

As has already been stated, we have commissioned a very distinguished panel to inform members of Parliament. Members of Parliament will get to decide and debate it. The ultimate decision will come from this House.

AfghanistanOral Questions

11:45 a.m.

NDP

Dawn Black NDP New Westminster—Coquitlam, BC

Mr. Speaker, we know that the Prime Minister's Office is fuming over this trip. There is nothing that the Conservatives hate more than a script that they have not written.

The government is spending $86 million a month on this war. An extension of 10 years would mean a bill reaching over $10 billion.

Serious questions are being raised about civilian control over the Department of National Defence. Who is calling the shots? Who is calling the shots with the Department of National Defence? Is it the minister or is it the general?

AfghanistanOral Questions

11:45 a.m.

Edmonton Centre Alberta

Conservative

Laurie Hawn ConservativeParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of National Defence

Mr. Speaker, the only thing fuming in here is the rhetoric and exaggeration from the NDP.

Let me say one more time, we are taking this mission extremely seriously. We are the only government that is taking it as serious as we are. We have committed to the Afghan people. We have committed to our alliance. We have committed to the Afghanistan Compact.

We have appointed a panel to advise Parliament and advise parliamentarians on the way ahead. We will listen very carefully to those recommendations. All of those recommendations will be debated in Parliament. It will be Parliament that decides, including the members of the opposition. If they will just hold down the rhetoric and the exaggeration, we will get the job done.

Royal Canadian Mounted PoliceOral Questions

11:45 a.m.

Liberal

Hedy Fry Liberal Vancouver Centre, BC

Mr. Speaker, last week I asked the Minister of Public Safety what he was doing to ensure that the RCMP had clear procedures in place for the safe use of tasers. Since then I have had a barrage of calls and letters from irate and concerned Canadians who feel that the minister's answer was not good enough.

Can the minister assure the House that procedures will be put in place and that the use of tasers is safe?

Royal Canadian Mounted PoliceOral Questions

11:45 a.m.

Oxford Ontario

Conservative

Dave MacKenzie ConservativeParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Public Safety

Mr. Speaker, in fact, procedures are already in place for the use of tasers. The Minister of Public Safety will be receiving a report on the matter. Because there is an ongoing investigation, it would be inappropriate for me to comment further.

Royal Canadian Mounted PoliceOral Questions

11:45 a.m.

Liberal

Hedy Fry Liberal Vancouver Centre, BC

Mr. Speaker, timing is crucial. The mother of the Polish man who died two weeks ago lives in Kamloops. She is inconsolable and she gets no answers. Canadians need answers now before more lives are lost.

Can the government assure Canadians that the RCMP will be given clear procedures for the proper use of tasers and that tasers themselves are a safe form of restraint?

Royal Canadian Mounted PoliceOral Questions

11:45 a.m.

Oxford Ontario

Conservative

Dave MacKenzie ConservativeParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Public Safety

Mr. Speaker, as I have already said, there are clear rules for the use of tasers throughout police agencies in Canada. This matter is under review. It would be inappropriate for me to comment further on a particular incident.

Veterans AffairsOral Questions

11:45 a.m.

Liberal

Rodger Cuzner Liberal Cape Breton—Canso, NS

Mr. Speaker, the Speech from the Throne deceptively promises to improve support for our veterans who have contributed so much to defending Canada in the past.

The Prime Minister gave his word to 150,000 veterans exposed to defoliants between 1956 and 1984 in Gagetown. He promised that they would receive immediate and full compensation, yet the package the government offered only applies to those exposed in 1966 and 1967.

Why did the Prime Minister break his promise to our brave veterans?

Veterans AffairsOral Questions

11:45 a.m.

New Brunswick Southwest New Brunswick

Conservative

Greg Thompson ConservativeMinister of Veterans Affairs

Mr. Speaker, I would ask that member to examine Dr. Furlong's report commissioned by the Liberal government. He might know the answer to that. The previous government had 13 years to do it and it did not get the job done.

Here is a partial list of what those members did not do and what they did do when they were in government. That is the same party that cut VIP services to allied veterans. They cut them out. They eliminated them. That party cut burial programs for our veterans. That is their record. They cut veteran travel rates and treatment benefits for veterans.

That is their sorry record in terms of veterans and the treatment of veterans.

Veterans AffairsOral Questions

11:50 a.m.

Liberal

Rodger Cuzner Liberal Cape Breton—Canso, NS

Mr. Speaker, the committee knows that the promise was made within committee by the minister as well. The Conservatives have refined promise breaking.

In a letter to Mrs. Joyce Carter, a constituent of mine, a veteran's widow, the Prime Minister unequivocally promised that he would “immediately extend the Veterans Independence Program services to the widows of all Second World War and Korean War veterans”. So far the promises have not been kept. We saw no sign in the budget. We see no sign in the throne speech.

When will the Prime Minister break the news about the broken promises to Mrs. Carter?

Veterans AffairsOral Questions

11:50 a.m.

New Brunswick Southwest New Brunswick

Conservative

Greg Thompson ConservativeMinister of Veterans Affairs

Mr. Speaker, we have honoured every promise that we made to veterans in our platform.

I remind the member that I have met with Mrs. Carter and I have outlined our plans for VIP to her. She knows those plans, as does the member. Sadly, he is obviously playing politics with this issue.

He did not listen very carefully. Liberal members deliberately and consciously stood in their places in this House and took VIP services away from our allied veterans. That is the Liberal record on VIP.

We are going to get it fixed. We made that commitment and we will do it.

AfghanistanOral Questions

11:50 a.m.

Bloc

Johanne Deschamps Bloc Laurentides—Labelle, QC

Mr. Speaker, the Chief of the Defence Staff, Rick Hillier, informed us that Canada has another 10 years to go in Afghanistan, but in the throne speech, the government stated that the mission could draw to a close in 2011 when the Afghanistan compact comes to an end.

How can the government promise to end the mission in 2011 when the Chief of the Defence Staff says something completely different? Who is telling the truth?

AfghanistanOral Questions

11:50 a.m.

Beauce Québec

Conservative

Maxime Bernier ConservativeMinister of Foreign Affairs

Mr. Speaker, a year ago, we consulted with parliamentarians about extending the mission in Afghanistan. The House agreed to extend it until February 2009. Recently, we told parliamentarians and Canadians that we will soon be discussing the future of the mission with the House. We are waiting for the panel's report, and I hope that all members of the House will contribute to this debate.

AfghanistanOral Questions

11:50 a.m.

Bloc

Johanne Deschamps Bloc Laurentides—Labelle, QC

Mr. Speaker, are the Manley panel and the throne speech not just smoke and mirrors to buy time and force us to accept that the mission in Afghanistan will last much longer than expected, as the Chief of the Defence Staff said?

AfghanistanOral Questions

11:50 a.m.

Beauce Québec

Conservative

Maxime Bernier ConservativeMinister of Foreign Affairs

Mr. Speaker, I am very proud that Mr. Manley has agreed to chair this panel of eminent Canadians who have contributed so much to this country. This is an independent group that will report to Parliament. We will take their recommendations into account when we get to the debate. I hope that the members of the Bloc Québécois are prepared to make a positive contribution to the debate.

Automobile IndustryOral Questions

11:50 a.m.

Liberal

Lloyd St. Amand Liberal Brant, ON

Mr. Speaker, our auto industry is facing a crisis. The Conservative government is negotiating a free trade deal with South Korea that will have devastating impacts on the industry. This unfair deal will open the Canadian market to more imported vehicles while incredibly, not letting any Canadian made vehicles enter South Korea.

When will the government actually do something to support the auto sector and assist our Canadian auto workers?

Automobile IndustryOral Questions

11:50 a.m.

Portage—Lisgar Manitoba

Conservative

Brian Pallister ConservativeParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of International Trade and to the Minister of International Cooperation

Mr. Speaker, it is ironic that the member would speak about doing things for the auto sector given the fact that during the 13 years that the Liberal Party was in power it failed to negotiate. It only negotiated four bilateral trade agreements with other nations in the world.

The government is aggressively pursuing negotiations for agreements which will help Canadians prosper and ensure that we are able to continue to expand on the business opportunities, not only in North America but around the world.

I think it is ironic that the member would raise that given the lack of presence by the Liberal Party in terms of the throne speech and every other issue of importance to the auto industry.

AgricultureOral Questions

October 26th, 2007 / 11:50 a.m.

Conservative

Denis Lebel Conservative Roberval—Lac-Saint-Jean, QC

Mr. Speaker, the Conservative government supports our supply management. However, in the past several months, Bloc Québécois members have taken their disinformation and fearmongering campaign on the road in Quebec's countryside. They are trying to make farmers believe that we are not committed to maintaining supply management.

Will the Secretary of State for Agriculture confirm that the Conservative government will fight to protect this system so essential to the regions of the Quebec nation and Canada?

AgricultureOral Questions

11:55 a.m.

Mégantic—L'Érable Québec

Conservative

Christian Paradis ConservativeSecretary of State (Agriculture)

Mr. Speaker, I thank my hon. colleague from Roberval—Lac-Saint-Jean for his excellent question. The hon. members know that, over the past 20 months, we have taken compelling action to defend supply management, this after 13 years of inaction on the part of the Liberals. In our Speech from the Throne, we indicated strong support for supply management. Let it be known that the Bloc Québécois has sacrificed our farmers on the altar of partisanship. By voting against our Speech from the Throne, it has voted against supply management. That is not pretty.

The Bloc Québécois, which will never be in government, just keeps voting against the Speech from the Throne. To be consistent for once, it could have voted in favour. I hope that, the next time they are out, the Bloc members will not duck the issue for fear of being told to take a hike by our farmers.