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House of Commons Hansard #26 of the 39th Parliament, 2nd Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was resp.

Topics

2:05 p.m.

Liberal

The Speaker Liberal Peter Milliken

It being Wednesday, we will now have the singing of the national anthem led by the hon. member for Halifax West.

[Members sang the national anthem]

Economic StatementStatements by Members

2:05 p.m.

Conservative

Rob Anders Conservative Calgary West, AB

Mr. Speaker, Canada's government recently announced the deepest tax cuts in a generation. The economic statement announced last month proposes broad-based tax relief for individuals, families and businesses of almost $60 billion.

There will be a $14 billion reduction in the federal debt. Measured against the economy, the national debt has fallen to its lowest level in 25 years.

The GST will be lowered to 5%.

Business taxes have been reduced to make Canada more competitive and investment friendly.

Together, these measures will reduce personal income taxes by more than $400 for a typical family earning $80,000 a year.

I am proud to be part of this hard-working, focused government that is committed to lowering taxes.

United NationsStatements by Members

2:05 p.m.

Liberal

Susan Kadis Liberal Thornhill, ON

Mr. Speaker, the United Nations General Assembly has lost its way in the Middle East. Its agenda has become politicized and its authority weakened.

Again this year, some 20 resolutions are dedicated to singling out one member state, Israel, for discriminatory treatment, without even a semblance of balance, undermining the UN's very legitimacy.

Why does the government continue its incremental approach, acquiescing and indulging in this flawed, one-sided process that does nothing to bring about a peaceful resolution to the Arab-Israeli conflict?

In November 2005, the previous Liberal government proposed a comprehensive review of these one-sided resolutions being rehashed every year, with a goal of moving instead to a Canadian-initiated omnibus resolution at the General Assembly of the UN that would restore balance and fairness into the process and be conducive to peace.

I call on the government to introduce a Canadian resolution on the Middle East that will move to restore the credibility of the UN so that it can perform true to its mission of fairness and the rule of law.

Russell MartinStatements by Members

2:05 p.m.

Bloc

Luc Malo Bloc Verchères—Les Patriotes, QC

Mr. Speaker, I am pleased and proud to acknowledge Russell Martin from Quebec, who is visiting Parliament Hill today. A member of the Los Angeles Dodgers since 2006, Russell Martin has already demonstrated that he has the calibre of a Roy Campanella or a Johnny Roseboro, two catchers who have marked the history of that prestigious baseball team.

A short while ago, Russell Martin, who was in his second major league season, won the Golden Glove award for best catcher in the National Baseball League. He also received the Silver Slugger award for best offensive player at his position. These honours crown a particularly eventful year for Russell Martin, who also played in last July's all-star game between the best players of the American League and those of the National Baseball League after more than 2 million supporters voted for him.

On behalf of my Bloc Québécois colleagues, I offer my heartfelt congratulations to Russell Martin.

Russell MartinStatements by Members

2:05 p.m.

Some hon. members

Hear, hear!

Russell MartinStatements by Members

2:05 p.m.

Liberal

The Speaker Liberal Peter Milliken

The hon. member for New Westminster--Coquitlam.

Violence Against WomenStatements by Members

2:05 p.m.

NDP

Dawn Black NDP New Westminster—Coquitlam, BC

Mr. Speaker, shockingly, violence against women still permeates our society. We are in the middle of The 16 Days of Activism Against Gender Violence and fast approaching--

Violence Against WomenStatements by Members

2:05 p.m.

Liberal

The Speaker Liberal Peter Milliken

Order. The hon. member for New Westminster--Coquitlam.

Violence Against WomenStatements by Members

2:05 p.m.

NDP

Dawn Black NDP New Westminster—Coquitlam, BC

Mr. Speaker, shockingly, violence against women still permeates our society. We are in the middle of The 16 Days of Activism Against Gender Violence and fast approaching December 6, a National Day of Remembrance and Action on Violence Against Women. It was my private member's bill that created this day, so it has particular significance for me.

Later today, members of Parliament will stand in the House of Commons and vote on a motion which calls upon Japan to offer a formal, sincere and unequivocal apology to the women forced into sexual slavery during the second world war. Several of these so-called comfort women are on Parliament Hill today, and one cannot help but be moved to tears by their terrible stories.

A vote in favour of this motion would be a vote in support of not only these women but all women across the world who have experienced unspeakable violence just because they are women. I urge all members to vote in favour of this motion. It is simply the right thing to do.

Genome CanadaStatements by Members

2:05 p.m.

Conservative

James Rajotte Conservative Edmonton—Leduc, AB

Mr. Speaker, I rise today to acknowledge Genome Canada. Since its inception in 2000, Genome Canada has built a strong research enterprise, allowing Canadian genomics scientists to gain well-deserved respect and credibility for the work they have accomplished on both the national and the international scenes.

The government's investment in Genome Canada will enable this scientific community to continue their important work of providing cutting edge research in key sectors such as agriculture, energy, the environment, fisheries, forestry, health, and new technology development that will help shape the future.

Later this afternoon, some of the world's leading scientists in genomics and proteomics research will be showcasing their projects in the Commonwealth room. During this exhibit, these scientists will demonstrate how they have achieved success in key research areas and also raise awareness of strategic research priorities of importance to the Canadian economy and society.

I encourage all my colleagues to walk down to the Commonwealth room to visit this important exhibit.

Gold Glove AwardStatements by Members

2:05 p.m.

Liberal

Marlene Jennings Liberal Notre-Dame-de-Grâce—Lachine, QC

Mr. Speaker, we are fortunate to have with us in Ottawa today my guest, Russell Martin, a former resident of Montreal West and a member of the Los Angeles Dodgers.

Russell recently won the Rawlings Gold Glove Award as the National League's best defensive catcher.

He also won the Louisville Silver Slugger Award as the best offensive player at his position.

I am proud to say that as a youth Russell honed his skills playing in the NDG Baseball Association in the early 1990s.

His determination and hard work to make it to the major leagues serve as an inspiration to all young Canadian athletes.

I would like to congratulate Russell and his family on all his accomplishments and extraordinary success.

They have good reason to be proud.

Canada is proud.

UkraineStatements by Members

2:10 p.m.

Conservative

Peter Goldring Conservative Edmonton East, AB

Mr. Speaker, today we remember the Holodomor, a crime against humanity that the world has chosen to forget.

More than seven million perished in Ukraine in a planned famine created by Stalin's despotic 1930s regime.

This annihilation was not caused by the ravages of nature nor the scourge of pestilence, nor by the obliteration of war, but by the hand of a dictator consumed with hatred.

Why mankind wreaks death and destruction on its own in such unimaginable numbers might not even have understanding given it by the Almighty in the hereafter.

Ukrainians, starved to death in the “Breadbasket of Europe”, are being remembered in ceremonies across Canada and around the world.

We remember today the victims of the Holodomor, of the dark side of humanity, and by remembering we help the world guard against those who would repeat such genocide.

Roger LevertStatements by Members

November 28th, 2007 / 2:10 p.m.

Bloc

Claude DeBellefeuille Bloc Beauharnois—Salaberry, QC

Mr. Speaker, on November 6, Roger Levert passed away at the age of 68. Roger was a city councillor in Salaberry-de-Valleyfield for more than 21 years, receiving an award from the Union des municipalités du Québec after 20 years in that role.

This likeable man had a passion for his work and enthusiastically represented his constituents and neighbourhood, working hard to serve everyone's needs. He was a grass-roots politician and always pushed for development in his neighbourhood, second only to the quality of life of its residents.

Roger was known not to beat around the bush and would best be described as a straight talker. He was an honest and generous man, who will be missed by everyone.

The Bloc Québécois and I would like to offer our condolences to his wife, Jeanne-d'Arc, his daughters, Sylvie and Nancy, and his sons, Dany and Roger Jr.

Bloc QuébécoisStatements by Members

2:10 p.m.

Conservative

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

Mr. Speaker, as its name implies, the “Bloc” is powerless to implement any measures in Quebec's interest. As you can see, all it can do is talk, criticize and block.

As for the ideas it comes up with, André Boisclair said it best: “when one does not have the responsibility that comes with wielding power, one can say whatever one likes”.

Not only has the Bloc been wandering around Quebec empty-handed, it has also failed to maintain a consistent position on assistance for the forestry and manufacturing industries. Now it is demanding that the federal government intervene, but the member for Chicoutimi—Le Fjord and his colleagues voted against the Speech from the Throne, which promised to take positive action for these sectors.

Moreover, the Bloc believes that, “historically, the federal government's economic policies have often had a negative impact on Quebec's development”. The Bloc should apologize to Quebeckers for its inability to take action.

Fortunately, workers can count on Conservative members because when we make promises, we keep them. We have what it takes to act in the best interest of Quebeckers and Canadians.

UkraineStatements by Members

2:10 p.m.

Liberal

Borys Wrzesnewskyj Liberal Etobicoke Centre, ON

Mr. Speaker, today marks the 75th anniversary of humanity's descent into the abyss of the Holodomor, the famine genocide of Ukraine's rural population.

Six to ten million were starved to death in the breadbasket of Europe.

As the famine raged, Ukraine's lush countryside was denuded of its leaves and grasses as people ate anything that grew.

One by one, hundred after hundred, thousand after thousand, million after million, they lay down their starved skin-and-bone bodies and became one with its fertile black soils, life extinguished.

As millions starved, Stalin exported grains from Ukraine's fertile lands to the west, a west which, apart from a handful of brave politicians and journalists, turned its gaze away while eating the bounty, the bread, from these starving lands.

Seventy-five years later, a genocide by attrition continues under our watch in Darfur. On the 75th anniversary of the Holodomor, let us pledge to those who have placed their trust in our leadership: Beelsh nikoly. Never again.

Government PoliciesStatements by Members

2:15 p.m.

Conservative

Jeff Watson Conservative Essex, ON

Mr. Speaker, two years ago we ended Liberal corruption and mismanagement with a vote of non-confidence; no dithering, no abstaining.

The Prime Minister when opposition leader stood up for Canadian families and demanded a clean government that kept its word and worked as hard as they did. Canadians trusted us to clean up Ottawa. We delivered.

We passed the Federal Accountability Act to end corruption. No more Liberal wild spending, or giving taxpayers the leftover crumbs. We have invested smartly in our provinces and the environment and have given billions back to seniors and families.

No more Liberal surrender on our military. No more Liberal soft on crime. No more Liberal mistrust in parental child care. This government supports parents, troops, and tougher penalties for criminals.

The Liberal lust for power will soon force Canadians back to the polls, but it will not force them back to a Liberal future.

Together, we are building a stronger, safer, better Canada that is a player on the world stage. Happy second anniversary.

North American Indigenous GamesStatements by Members

2:15 p.m.

NDP

Jean Crowder NDP Nanaimo—Cowichan, BC

Mr. Speaker, the 2008 North American Indigenous Games, called the “Journey of a Generation”, are coming to the Cowichan Valley, thanks to Cowichan tribes.

This event will bring together young athletes from all around North America to compete in games ranging from lacrosse to swimming to baseball, and indigenous games including war canoe racing and hoop dancing.

The games are also a cultural celebration. They begin with a tribal journey of over 80 canoes coming from around the Pacific Northwest to gather for the opening ceremonies which are expected to draw over 20,000 participants and spectators.

Over 8,000 athletes, cultural leaders and performers will find a huge welcome in the beautiful Cowichan Valley. It will be a great preview for the 2010 Olympics in Whistler and Vancouver.

I call on the government to use this opportunity to make an investment in aboriginal cultural awareness and aboriginal tourism in conjunction with the North American Indigenous Games. The rewards will be far-reaching and will benefit communities throughout British Columbia.

Middle EastStatements by Members

2:15 p.m.

Liberal

Anita Neville Liberal Winnipeg South Centre, MB

Mr. Speaker, the government's record on one-sided United Nations resolutions does not match its rhetoric.

Last year the Government of Canada failed to show a principled approach by continuing to acquiesce in the flawed general assembly resolution process on the Middle East.

Operations of the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees is an example of an anti-Israeli resolution that the government supported. Not only does this resolution condemn Israel for its security measures, it falsely accuses Israel of attacking refugee children and UNRWA schools. It does not condemn terrorists for using UNRWA facilities.

This week Canada will be voting on this and many other resolutions condemning Israel. I urge the government to propose a single comprehensive resolution that would seek to advance the cause of peace and restore the integrity of the United Nations.

Minister of JusticeStatements by Members

2:15 p.m.

Bloc

Robert Vincent Bloc Shefford, QC

Mr. Speaker, during question period yesterday, the leader of the Bloc Québécois asked the Minister of Justice four times about his discretionary power to delay the extradition of Mr. Schreiber.

The minister would only say that the person in question must be convicted or serving a sentence. As set out in section 42 of the Extradition Act, nothing could be further from the truth. Yesterday, the House legal counsel said that the minister has the power, by merely snapping his fingers, to delay the extradition since it is a political decision.

It is disgraceful that a Minister of Justice would behave this way in the House of Commons and deceive Canadians. What message is he sending? To suit his own purposes, he is making sure that the process will not be used. How can we trust this minister, who was elected under Brian Mulroney?

Pulmonary HypertensionStatements by Members

2:15 p.m.

Liberal

Don Bell Liberal North Vancouver, BC

Mr. Speaker, I would like to welcome representatives from the Pulmonary Hypertension Association of Canada, PHA, and the Canadian Organization for Rare Disorders, CORD, to Ottawa today in recognition of PH Awareness Month.

Pulmonary hypertension is a condition of high blood pressure in the lungs and affects up to 5,000 Canadians, men and women of all ages and ethnicities. There is currently no cure for pulmonary hypertension and untreated, PH will claim the lives of 50% of patients within the first two years after diagnosis. One in ten Canadians will be diagnosed with a rare disorder like pulmonary hypertension and there are approximately 5,000 such disorders in Canada.

CORD is urging Canada to adopt a formal definition of rare disorder or disease and to create a Canadian orphan drug policy to respond to persons with rare disorders.

My grandson, Dylan Hunter Bell, was diagnosed with PH at age two and passed away July 14 this year, the day after his 12th birthday.

As a father and as a grandfather, I invite all Canadians to join in the fight to raise awareness of PH and rare disorders.

Tackling Violent Crime LegislationStatements by Members

2:20 p.m.

Conservative

Pierre Poilievre Conservative Nepean—Carleton, ON

Mr. Speaker, yesterday the member for Timmins—James Bay trumpeted his party's efforts to block the tackling violent crime act.

He said that tackling violent crime is “not substantive”. He then said that chasing down young thugs who steal handbags from old ladies is an effort that is “not substantive”. He went on to argue that the opposition should block the bill.

We here on this side say that we should raise the age of sexual protection from 14 to 16 to protect kids from adult predators. He said that is “not substantive”.

We want to bring in three strikes and you are out legislation to put away dangerous offenders. He said that is “not substantive”.

If he keeps on blocking our tough on crime agenda, he will find himself on the wrong of his voters and that will be very substantive.

The EnvironmentOral Questions

2:20 p.m.

Saint-Laurent—Cartierville Québec

Liberal

Stéphane Dion LiberalLeader of the Opposition

Mr. Speaker, as a welcome home gift, the Prime Minister received a motion from the Quebec National Assembly unanimously rejecting his international position on climate change, which represents an abdication of Canadian responsibilities as does his plan, in Canada, that has targets so weak that he will pay polluters rather than make them pay. Tar sands developers, for example, will make hundreds of millions of dollars with his bogus plan.

Will he boast about this fraud in Bali?

The EnvironmentOral Questions

2:20 p.m.

Calgary Southwest Alberta

Conservative

Stephen Harper ConservativePrime Minister

Mr. Speaker, yesterday someone said the following: “We believe that binding targets should be imposed on everyone and that countries—including the United States and emerging countries such as China and India—must contribute to the fight against climate change.”

That is the position of the Government of Canada. Those are the words of the Quebec Minister of the Environment.

The EnvironmentOral Questions

2:20 p.m.

Saint-Laurent—Cartierville Québec

Liberal

Stéphane Dion LiberalLeader of the Opposition

Mr. Speaker, the Prime Minister undoubtedly wishes to say that the Quebec Minister of the Environment has contradicted himself. In fact, it is the Prime Minister who is contradicting himself by not offering Canada a serious plan.

He is embarrassing Canada. He is promoting a race to the bottom internationally. Two additional studies confirm once again that his plan here in Canada is a fraud.

I ask the Prime Minister, what is more embarrassing, what he is doing abroad, or what he is doing here in Canada? I reject both, as do the majority of Canadians.

The EnvironmentOral Questions

2:20 p.m.

Calgary Southwest Alberta

Conservative

Stephen Harper ConservativePrime Minister

Mr. Speaker, the Minister of the Environment's plan has the first mandatory emissions reduction of greenhouse gases in Canada: 20% by 2020 and 60% to 70% by 2050.

I was surprised to read upon coming back that the leader of the Liberal Party believed that this government should have signed on to a declaration of the Commonwealth that would have meant that greenhouse gas emissions would double over the next 50 years. That is irresponsible, and it is unacceptable to Canadians and to this government.