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House of Commons Hansard #12 of the 39th Parliament, 2nd Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was c-7.

Topics

Canada Border Services AgencyOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Okanagan—Coquihalla B.C.

Conservative

Stockwell Day ConservativeMinister of Public Safety

Mr. Speaker, we have adopted all the recommendations of the Auditor General. In fact, they coincided with a number of areas where we had increased investment just in the last year and a half, investment areas that had previously been neglected by the Liberals.

We can see the results of that. There was a 50% increase in the amount of contraband seized at the border. There were 500 different cases where firearms were seized at the border. That is an increase of about 40%. About 12,600 people were deemed inadmissible and were removed from the country, many with criminal affiliations. That is another increase. Improvements are being made.

Canada Border Services AgencyOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Liberal

Ujjal Dosanjh Liberal Vancouver South, BC

Mr. Speaker, the security of our borders is a top priority and the government is not doing enough to ensure it. Twenty-one per cent of red flagged, highly dangerous people are getting into the country. Shipments and people deemed potentially dangerous are not being investigated or detained and once they are in the country, CBSA has no way of tracking them at all.

When will the minister take his responsibilities seriously and begin enforcing vigorously the laws of our country at the ports and borders?

Canada Border Services AgencyOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Okanagan—Coquihalla B.C.

Conservative

Stockwell Day ConservativeMinister of Public Safety

Mr. Speaker, we accept all the recommendations of the Auditor General related to border services.

In the area of people deemed inadmissible, I do not know if the member was listening or not, but about 12,600 people deemed inadmissible were moved out of the country last year and 2,000 of those had criminal affiliations. Of those who were pursued, there was over a 90% conviction rate.

It is interesting. The member opposite raises concerns saying we are not moving enough inadmissible people out of the country or stopping them. Every time we do, he is one of the first ones to complain that we are moving somebody out.

UkraineOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Conservative

James Bezan Conservative Selkirk—Interlake, MB

Mr. Speaker, this year marks the 75th anniversary of the Holodomor, the great famine in Ukraine. Millions of Ukrainians died during Holodomor in 1932 and 1933. Many Ukrainian Canadians survived the famine, while others had family and friends starve to death back in the Ukraine.

Could the Secretary of State (Multiculturalism and Canadian Identity) share with the House the initiative Canada has taken to commemorate the millions of lives lost in this tragedy?

UkraineOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Calgary Southeast Alberta

Conservative

Jason Kenney ConservativeSecretary of State (Multiculturalism and Canadian Identity)

Mr. Speaker, the member's interest in this issue is evidenced by his bill on the Holodomor. Canada is connected to this dark chapter in history by more than a million Canadians of Ukrainian descent, many of whom lost family during the Holodomor.

On October 23, Canada co-sponsored a motion by Ukraine, which has been adopted by UNESCO, that honours the memory of millions who perished in the famine and acknowledges it was caused by the brutal communist dictatorship of Joseph Stalin.

Let me add that the government welcomes plans by the Ukrainian Canadian Congress to launch a year of commemorative events next month surrounding the great historic tragedy of the Holodomor.

Economic StatementOral Questions

October 31st, 2007 / 2:55 p.m.

NDP

Peggy Nash NDP Parkdale—High Park, ON

Mr. Speaker, when it comes to keeping its promises, the government was going in the wrong direction. Now that the Liberals have rolled over and joined with the Prime Minister, it is heading in the wrong direction faster than ever.

With billions of dollars in surplus, the government had an opportunity to keep its promises from the last election.

Could the government explain why the mini budget cuts corporate taxes by another $14 billion, something it did not promise, but fails to create child care spaces or transfer 5¢ in gas tax to municipalities, two things it did promise?

Economic StatementOral Questions

2:55 p.m.

Whitby—Oshawa Ontario

Conservative

Jim Flaherty ConservativeMinister of Finance

Mr. Speaker, the total tax reductions in yesterday's announcements are $60 billion over this year and the next five years, $45 billion of that relates to deductions for individuals and for families. That is three-quarters of the tax reductions.

When the member says that they are mainly corporate tax reductions, that is wrong. The corporate reductions are important, but the majority of the reductions are personal, for individuals and families in Canada.

Economic StatementOral Questions

2:55 p.m.

NDP

David Christopherson NDP Hamilton Centre, ON

Mr. Speaker, when it comes to investing in cities and communities, the government was already heading in the wrong direction. Now that the Liberals have rolled over and joined the Prime Minister in coalition, Canada will be heading in the wrong direction even faster.

Mayors across Canada are saying that the mini budget is a failure because it ignores the $100 billion infrastructure deficit. Corporate tax cuts will not fix streets and bridges, fund transit or ensure safe drinking water.

Why does the mini budget have billions for banks and oil companies, but not one penny for our crumbling cities?

Economic StatementOral Questions

2:55 p.m.

Whitby—Oshawa Ontario

Conservative

Jim Flaherty ConservativeMinister of Finance

Mr. Speaker, yesterday's announcement was the financial statement, the update.

The budget, in March of this year, set out $33 billion for infrastructure in Canada. When that is leveraged with the provinces and the municipalities, and the private sector in some circumstances, that will be more than $100 billion for cities and towns for infrastructure, which is important for our country, for the economic federation all across Canada.

Air TransportationOral Questions

2:55 p.m.

Liberal

Bonnie Brown Liberal Oakville, ON

Mr. Speaker, my question is about the government's decision to blindly obey the Bush administration's order to surrender passenger lists for Canadian flights that do not even land in the United States. Why does the Bush White House need to know which Canadians go to Cuba on vacation?

Could the minister tell us what this information will be used for, or does he even know?

Air TransportationOral Questions

2:55 p.m.

Pontiac Québec

Conservative

Lawrence Cannon ConservativeMinister of Transport

Mr. Speaker, I will repeat it in the House. The U.S. is a sovereign country and has the sovereign right to be informed as to who is on all aircraft that are flying in its territory.

In that regard, we are working with the Americans to make sure—

Air TransportationOral Questions

2:55 p.m.

Liberal

Ralph Goodale Liberal Wascana, SK

It's not the United States you should be concerned about.

Air TransportationOral Questions

2:55 p.m.

Conservative

Lawrence Cannon Conservative Pontiac, QC

Ralph, just shut it up.

Air TransportationOral Questions

2:55 p.m.

Some hon. members

Oh, oh!

Air TransportationOral Questions

2:55 p.m.

Liberal

The Speaker Liberal Peter Milliken

Order, please. The Minister of Transport has the floor. We will have a little order. I cannot hear his answer.

Air TransportationOral Questions

2:55 p.m.

Conservative

Lawrence Cannon Conservative Pontiac, QC

Mr. Speaker, I am worried about the member for Wascana's verbal hernia. That disturbs me a bit.

However, on the issue, once again, I want to reiterate that Canadians will be flying safely. We are working with the Americans to make that—

Air TransportationOral Questions

2:55 p.m.

Liberal

The Speaker Liberal Peter Milliken

The hon. member for Oakville.

Air TransportationOral Questions

2:55 p.m.

Liberal

Bonnie Brown Liberal Oakville, ON

Mr. Speaker, Maher Arar's name has been cleared, but the government still cannot get his name off the American no-fly list.

Why is the Minister of Transport providing private information on Canadians to the Americans when we know they have misused it in the past?

Air TransportationOral Questions

2:55 p.m.

Okanagan—Coquihalla B.C.

Conservative

Stockwell Day ConservativeMinister of Public Safety

Mr. Speaker, at every diplomatic level we continue to request of the American authorities to remove Mr. Arar's name, and we will continue to make that case.

Post-Secondary EducationOral Questions

2:55 p.m.

Liberal

Michael Savage Liberal Dartmouth—Cole Harbour, NS

Mr. Speaker, the government continues to be a disaster for Canadian students. It has invested nothing in grants, offered tiny tax credits for which most students do not even qualify, dithered over the millennium scholarship, and botched the summer jobs program.

The Speech from the Throne ignored education. Students were shut out. Yesterday offered nothing for education, nothing for students. Again, a complete shutout.

We need to improve productivity. Productivity depends on education. Education means students, students need help, and they need it now.

Why does the government continue to ignore Canadian students?

Post-Secondary EducationOral Questions

3 p.m.

Medicine Hat Alberta

Conservative

Monte Solberg ConservativeMinister of Human Resources and Social Development

Mr. Speaker, it takes a lot of guts to get up and chide us on post-secondary education when it was the hon. member's government that cut $25 billion out of the Canada social transfer. That was devastating to universities in this country.

The fact is we have increased funding for post-secondary education by 40% in the last budget, and today we spend more on training in this country than any federal government in history.

Post-Secondary EducationOral Questions

3 p.m.

Liberal

Michael Savage Liberal Dartmouth—Cole Harbour, NS

Mr. Speaker, the minister loves to talk about cuts from a decade ago. He has changed his tune a bit. In March 1995 he said in the House of the government, “When will they have the guts to do the right thing: start cutting--?”

Then on December 15, after the government brought in action to reduce the deficit, he then said, “We are going to have to cut deeper into our social programs”.

His selective memory reflects the hypocrisy of the government. The Liberal government cleaned up a Conservative mess, then it invested in students. The Conservatives inherited a Liberal surplus, and nothing for students.

Why is the government turning its back on students? Why?

Post-Secondary EducationOral Questions

3 p.m.

Medicine Hat Alberta

Conservative

Monte Solberg ConservativeMinister of Human Resources and Social Development

Mr. Speaker, I think history will reflect that actually the Liberals cut the Canada social transfer, but they preserved all the funding that ultimately provided them with the $40 million that is now missing somewhere among the Liberal ranks.

The fact is the government has taken very important steps to restore funding for universities and colleges. We have put in place a number of new measures to assist students directly.

We are helping students because we understand that education is part of the solution. The Liberals apparently thought it was part of the problem.

Older WorkersOral Questions

3 p.m.

Bloc

Yves Lessard Bloc Chambly—Borduas, QC

Mr. Speaker, the government's many promises to older workers are just lip service. When it is time to put forward concrete measures, it does very little. After acknowledging the problem in the throne speech and the budget, it completely abandoned older workers in yesterday's economic statement.

Does the Minister of Finance realize that older workers need financial support now and that the message he is sending them is that it is more important for him to help the big oil companies get rich than it is to help older workers who are losing their jobs?

Older WorkersOral Questions

3 p.m.

Medicine Hat Alberta

Conservative

Monte Solberg ConservativeMinister of Human Resources and Social Development

Mr. Speaker, as the Minister of Finance pointed out, jobs are being created in record numbers in Quebec today, but we are also making sure that we are there for those people in certain sectors who are having difficulty.

That is why we announced the targeted initiative for older workers. That is why we both reduced premiums and increased benefits for employment insurance.

We have launched an expert panel on older workers and we look forward to getting their recommendations.

As I mentioned before, we are spending more on training to help people than any government in history. I am pretty proud of that record.