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House of Commons Hansard #15 of the 39th Parliament, 2nd Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was jobs.

Topics

AirbusOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Liberal

The Speaker Liberal Peter Milliken

Order, please. The Minister of Justice has the floor and I cannot hear a word he is saying because there is so much noise. The member for Bourassa has asked a question and he needs to be able to hear the answer because he has a supplementary. The Minister of Justice will have the floor and we will have some order, please.

AirbusOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Conservative

Rob Nicholson Conservative Niagara Falls, ON

Mr. Speaker, all of us on this side take our responsibilities very seriously and we act in accordance with good judgment and strong principles.

The question is irresponsible. We will go forward with the plan as outlined by the Prime Minister. We will get to the facts on all of these issues so it will not be a witch hunt, which is what members opposite would like to see.

AirbusOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Liberal

Denis Coderre Liberal Bourassa, QC

Mr. Speaker, it is difficult. The former Minister of Justice, who is now President of the Treasury Board, came from the Reform wing of the government. The current Minister of Justice is a survivor of the shipwreck of the Mulroney government. The former was interested in new developments in the Mulroney-Schreiber affair; the latter preferred not to know.

Will the Prime Minister give the public inquiry a mandate to shed light on the backroom dealings between ministers of his own cabinet who have tried to keep the truth from coming out?

AirbusOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Niagara Falls Ontario

Conservative

Rob Nicholson ConservativeMinister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada

That is some babble that came from the hon. member, Mr. Speaker, but the premise of his question is completely wrong. The President of the Treasury Board was never a member of the Reform Party.

Aboriginal AffairsOral Questions

November 13th, 2007 / 2:40 p.m.

Conservative

James Lunney Conservative Nanaimo—Alberni, BC

Mr. Speaker, this morning, the Minister of Indian Affairs and Northern Development proudly tabled legislation to repeal section 67 of the Canadian Human Rights Act. Amazingly, section 67 prevents first nations people from enjoying the same human rights protection that all other Canadians enjoy.

Could the minister explain to this House, and especially for the benefit of opposition members who opposed this during the last session, why this bill is so important and fundamentally the right thing to do?

Aboriginal AffairsOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Chilliwack—Fraser Canyon B.C.

Conservative

Chuck Strahl ConservativeMinister of Indian Affairs and Northern Development and Federal Interlocutor for Métis and Non-Status Indians

Mr. Speaker, our government has been committed to giving tangible results for first nations, which is why we were committed to repealing section 67 of the Canadian Human Rights Act which has shamefully prevented first nations from receiving the same legal protection afforded to all other Canadians.

This is not just an aboriginal issue, it is also a human rights issue and all Canadians should be able to enjoy the same rights and benefits. No one should be exempted.

The government is taking action to improve the quality of life for first nations people. The Liberals and other parties may think that they would rather support a purely symbolic motion at the United Nations but we will not turn our backs on real human rights legislation. First nations deserve it now.

AirbusOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

NDP

Pat Martin NDP Winnipeg Centre, MB

Mr. Speaker, it was the culture of secrecy that allowed corruption to flourish under the Liberal regime. Now the stink of corruption is hanging over the Conservative government, with allegations of a former prime minister accepting brown paper bags full of money in secret meetings in a hotel room.

Now that a public inquiry is inevitable, the question arises as to when. Will the Prime Minister commit that a full public inquiry will be held before the next federal election can be triggered?

AirbusOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Niagara Falls Ontario

Conservative

Rob Nicholson ConservativeMinister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada

Mr. Speaker, none of these questions was written before they actually heard any of the answers today.

The Prime Minister has indicated that an independent third party will have a look at this and set out the parameters for a public inquiry. That should satisfy all members of the House.

AirbusOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

NDP

Pat Martin NDP Winnipeg Centre, MB

Mr. Speaker, I think we all agree an independent third party and contracting this work out is a complete waste of time and in fact a stall and delay tactic.

When Allan Rock folded like a cheap suit and gave $2.1 million rather than investigate further, it was the current Minister of Indian Affairs who demanded that the issue be sent to a parliamentary committee for review.

Will the government House leader agree to allow this issue to be brought up at the access to information and ethics committee when the motion is put forward there? Will he agree to a study at a parliamentary committee instead of contracting--

AirbusOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Liberal

The Speaker Liberal Peter Milliken

AirbusOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Niagara Falls Ontario

Conservative

Rob Nicholson ConservativeMinister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada

Mr. Speaker, I think one of the things on which we can all agree is that the NDP will never be satisfied with anything or any course of action on this or anything else.

What we are proposing I think is quite reasonable. A public inquiry is the way to go and that is what we promised.

AirbusOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Liberal

Ujjal Dosanjh Liberal Vancouver South, BC

Mr. Speaker, last Friday the Prime Minister ordered everyone in his Conservative government to have no further dealings with Brian Mulroney while the probe was being conducted. He would only have needed to make that order if Mr. Mulroney was currently engaged in dealing with the government.

As an unregistered lobbyist, what specific file is Mr. Mulroney involved in, with which ministers, on behalf of which clients, and would the public inquiry cover all of this?

AirbusOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Niagara Falls Ontario

Conservative

Rob Nicholson ConservativeMinister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada

Mr. Speaker, I have no idea what the hon. member is talking about.

AirbusOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

An hon. member

You will.

AirbusOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Some hon. members

Oh, oh!

AirbusOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Liberal

The Speaker Liberal Peter Milliken

Order. The hon. member for Vancouver South now has the floor.

AirbusOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Liberal

Ujjal Dosanjh Liberal Vancouver South, BC

Mr. Speaker, sure they do not know what we are talking about.

Many members of the government have been friends and confidants of Brian Mulroney for decades. The defence minister owes one of his first jobs to Mr. Schreiber. The government leader in the Senate ruled as queen of Mulroney patronage and the justice minister was a secretary in the Mulroney government.

How can the Prime Minister expect Canadians to believe that no members of his government will have any direct or indirect contact with Brian Mulroney while the inquiry is under way?

AirbusOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Niagara Falls Ontario

Conservative

Rob Nicholson ConservativeMinister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada

Mr. Speaker, I was not a secretary. I was basically running the government in those days, just for the record here, but that is not widely known.

If the hon. member has any allegations or something else, I am sure he will want to bring them to the public inquiry.

AirbusOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Liberal

Ralph Goodale Liberal Wascana, SK

Mr. Speaker, in December 1994 Brian Mulroney met Karlheinz Schreiber in a New York hotel room to receive an envelope containing $100,000 in cash. When that money was brought across the border into Canada, many laws would apply.

Can the revenue minister tell us, did Mr. Mulroney declare his $100,000 to customs officials as required? Was U.S. withholding tax paid on that cash? If this payment was for consulting services, did Mr. Mulroney pay the GST?

AirbusOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Niagara Falls Ontario

Conservative

Rob Nicholson ConservativeMinister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada

Mr. Speaker, actually I better get the parameters that the hon. member wants us to operate under. He wants us to release the income tax records of a Canadian citizen. Is it just for that individual, or just for people that the Liberal Party does not like? Is that the Liberals' usual procedure?

AirbusOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Liberal

Ralph Goodale Liberal Wascana, SK

Mr. Speaker, I assume the government's stonewalling means the revenue minister has not done his job, or has been told not to do his job.

Whatever one may think of Mr. Schreiber, he is a central participant in a very serious scandal involving a former Conservative prime minister, but in 48 hours he may be shipped out of this country and silenced.

Will the government ensure that Mr. Schreiber is available in person for questioning under oath in Canada as part of any judicial inquiry or any other Canadian legal proceeding?

AirbusOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Niagara Falls Ontario

Conservative

Rob Nicholson ConservativeMinister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada

Mr. Speaker, that may be the Liberal way of acting, releasing people's income tax records without their permission or without the benefit of a court order. That was the suggestion they made, but I can say to the hon. member in respect to the second half of his question, inasmuch as he has referred to an extradition hearing, we never discuss those matters in public.

Manufacturing SectorOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Bloc

Paule Brunelle Bloc Trois-Rivières, QC

Mr. Speaker, on page 30 of the Minister of Finance's economic statement, there is a very telling graph showing that the GDPs of all manufacturing sectors, except oil, are on the decline. This decline has been in evidence since 2005, which indicates that all these sectors are technically in a recession.

Will the minister admit that this graph proves beyond all doubt that we are right to be concerned about the difficulties facing the manufacturing sector?

Manufacturing SectorOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Whitby—Oshawa Ontario

Conservative

Jim Flaherty ConservativeMinister of Finance

Mr. Speaker, Canada's economy under this Conservative government is strong and thriving. The employment data is very strong, including the employment data from the province of Quebec.

It is good news for Canadians that we have this continued strong growth. The unemployment rate in fact is the lowest it has been in 33 years. There are more Canadian men and women working today than ever before in the history of Canada.

Manufacturing SectorOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Bloc

Paule Brunelle Bloc Trois-Rivières, QC

Mr. Speaker, last week, 10 months after the Standing Committee on Industry, Science and Technology, Jean Charest, the Quebec Forest Industry Council and the labour federations stepped up to demand immediate measures to help stop the hemorrhaging of the manufacturing sector.

How can the government justify its inaction when its own economic statement acknowledges the crisis in the manufacturing sector, and when it has had since last February the 22 recommendations from the Standing Committee on Industry, Science and Technology, which is urging the government to act as quickly as possible?