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House of Commons Hansard #169 of the 39th Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was million.

Topics

Natural ResourcesOral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Saanich—Gulf Islands B.C.

Conservative

Gary Lunn ConservativeMinister of Natural Resources

Mr. Speaker, this program is not only available to Quebeckers, it is available to every single Canadian. It is achieving results, something on which Canadians demanded action, from this government, unlike the old Liberal Party. We all know the Liberal Party's record on the environment. Greenhouse gases skyrocketed to 35% under the direction of the now Liberal leader. The Liberal Party's record was a disaster. We are getting the job done.

Agriculture and Agri-foodOral Questions

June 12th, 2007 / 2:35 p.m.

Bloc

André Bellavance Bloc Richmond—Arthabaska, QC

Mr. Speaker, as of July 12, all Quebec and Canadian cattle producers who export their products to the United States will be subject to very strict health standards to ensure food safety. However, American producers can export their cattle to Canada without having to adhere to similar standards.

How can the Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food justify this?

Agriculture and Agri-foodOral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Chilliwack—Fraser Canyon B.C.

Conservative

Chuck Strahl ConservativeMinister of Agriculture and Agri-Food and Minister for the Canadian Wheat Board

Mr. Speaker, I just came back from Paris a week or two ago where we got for the very first time, and this is important--

Agriculture and Agri-foodOral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Some hon. members

Hear, hear!

Oh, oh!

Agriculture and Agri-foodOral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Liberal

The Speaker Liberal Peter Milliken

Order. I know hon. members are glad to welcome the minister back, but he is here to give an answer now, and we will want to hear the answer.

The hon. the Minister of Agriculture has the floor.

Agriculture and Agri-foodOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Conservative

Chuck Strahl Conservative Chilliwack—Fraser Canyon, BC

Mr. Speaker, I just came back from an unnamed city in Europe.

The designation we got from the World Organisation for Animal Health, the OIE, is that Canada under the BSE ruling is now a controlled risk country. This means we have the same risk as the United States, the very best risk possible. This means we will be able to sell products around the world.

Agriculture and Agri-foodOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Bloc

André Bellavance Bloc Richmond—Arthabaska, QC

Mr. Speaker, we have a double standard here. The minister has been travelling and is not aware of this. The minister must realize that by not requiring the same of the United States, he is favouring American producers over Quebec and Canadian farmers.

What is the minister waiting for to impose the same standards on the Americans as the ones imposed on us in order to protect public health? Is he the Minister of Agriculture of the United States or of Canada?

Agriculture and Agri-foodOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Chilliwack—Fraser Canyon B.C.

Conservative

Chuck Strahl ConservativeMinister of Agriculture and Agri-Food and Minister for the Canadian Wheat Board

Mr. Speaker, we are working closely with our American friends and with other countries around the world to make sure that the border is fully open for cattle over 30 months. The rule 2 which is making its way through the system down in the United States will open the border fully. We are confident that is going to move forward. Of course I have constant contact with my American counterpart to make sure it goes through.

We are confident when rule 2 is proclaimed that Canadian cattle will finally move back and forth across the border the way they used to. That would make for money in Canadian farmers' pockets.

Veterans AffairsOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Liberal

Rodger Cuzner Liberal Cape Breton—Canso, NS

Mr. Speaker, the litany of broken promises by the government to the people of Nova Scotia is broad and deep, but there is one that stands out even more shamefully than the rest. That is the promise made to a constituent of mine, Joyce Carter, who received a written promise from the Prime Minister who said that upon taking office he would extend VIP benefits to all veterans and their widows, not some, not a few, not most, but all veterans and their widows.

Why did the Prime Minister break his promise to Joyce Carter?

Veterans AffairsOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

New Brunswick Southwest New Brunswick

Conservative

Greg Thompson ConservativeMinister of Veterans Affairs

Mr. Speaker, what really gets me in that question is the hypocrisy of the Liberals. For 13 years they purposely and deliberately took benefits from veterans.

As I told the House and I told the member himself, we have a health care review under way and we are going to enhance those benefits but only once the review is completed.

We are not going to be like the Liberals and take benefits away from veterans which they did for 13 years.

Veterans AffairsOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Liberal

Rodger Cuzner Liberal Cape Breton—Canso, NS

Mr. Speaker, for the record, I asked this same question over a year ago in the House. Nothing was done then and nothing still remains done.

Mrs. Carter is now a year older but she is a year wiser and she is wise to the fact that the Prime Minister holds no credibility. His word is no good.

When will somebody on that government bench show some courage, turn to Mrs. Carter and tell her that the government is finally going to deliver on the written promise that was made by the Prime Minister? Tell her.

Veterans AffairsOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

New Brunswick Southwest New Brunswick

Conservative

Greg Thompson ConservativeMinister of Veterans Affairs

Mr. Speaker, again this goes back to the hypocrisy of the Liberals. The Liberal member would know that in the last year alone we have brought over 12,000 new entries into the VIP system.

He never tells that to Mrs. Carter or anyone else. He should do the math. The Liberals did not do their job in 13 years. We will get the job done but only after our health care review is completed so it will be the best service to the veterans and the widows. It will be consistent and good delivery to those people.

Veterans AffairsOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Liberal

Albina Guarnieri Liberal Mississauga East—Cooksville, ON

Mr. Speaker, yesterday the Prime Minister told Nova Scotians that if they wanted him to keep his word, they would have to go to court.

Veterans affected by agent orange are already going to court as the Prime Minister continues to stall a compensation package in cabinet.

I ask the Prime Minister, will he finally pay up, or does he plan to betray veterans the same way he betrayed Nova Scotia, Newfoundland, and Saskatchewan?

Veterans AffairsOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

New Brunswick Southwest New Brunswick

Conservative

Greg Thompson ConservativeMinister of Veterans Affairs

Mr. Speaker, the member is the former minister who was in a total state of denial during her time in office, as was the Liberal government for 13 years, even going back to the days of Pierre Trudeau. We will have a resolution to this without their help. The Liberals did absolutely nothing except deny it for 13 years and many years before that. This file goes back 40 years. She of all people would know that. She sat in her place and did nothing all the time that she was minister.

Veterans AffairsOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Some hon. members

Oh, oh!

Veterans AffairsOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Liberal

The Speaker Liberal Peter Milliken

Order. There seems to be excessive noise today. Hon. members could perhaps calm down so that we can hear the exchanges that are taking place in the House from the members who have been recognized to speak and not from everybody else. The hon. member for Mississauga East—Cooksville now has the floor.

Veterans AffairsOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Liberal

Albina Guarnieri Liberal Mississauga East—Cooksville, ON

Mr. Speaker, the minister is a broken record defending his broken promises.

In addition to stalling a $3 billion election promise on agent orange, the minister has reversed his pre-election position that agent orange disability claims should be automatically approved. In fact, in just the last fiscal year, over 700 agent orange claims have been rejected while only 19 have been approved.

Why has the minister taken so long to deliver so little after promising so much?

Veterans AffairsOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

New Brunswick Southwest New Brunswick

Conservative

Greg Thompson ConservativeMinister of Veterans Affairs

Mr. Speaker, as you well know, this file has been around for 40 years. The Liberals fell asleep on it. We are going to get it done.

Here are examples of the hon. member's record as minister. The Liberals cut VIP services to allied veterans. They did that. They cut burial programs for veterans. The member did that. The Liberals cut travel rates and treatment benefits to veterans. She did that on her watch. The Liberals cut $59 million from veterans in 1995 and another $11 million in 1998. That is their record. It is pathetic.

We will get the job done on agent orange as well.

Canadian Wheat BoardOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Conservative

Rick Casson Conservative Lethbridge, AB

Mr. Speaker, the agriculture minister has been doing such a great job of answering questions today that I want to give him another chance.

During the last election, our party campaigned on greater marketing freedom for western farmers. We recently held a plebiscite on barley in which a clear majority of growers, 62%, told us they wanted greater freedom of choice.

For far too long producers have been forced to sell their crops through the single desk monopoly of the Canadian Wheat Board. Can the Minister of Agriculture tell the House when barley growers will finally have their freedom to choose how they market their own grain?

Canadian Wheat BoardOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Chilliwack—Fraser Canyon B.C.

Conservative

Chuck Strahl ConservativeMinister of Agriculture and Agri-Food and Minister for the Canadian Wheat Board

Mr. Speaker, I am pleased to say that on August 1 western Canadian barley farmers will finally have the freedom to choose how they market their grain.

This change is about creating opportunity for farmers. It is about certainty for farmers. It is about creating profitability for farmers. Sixty-two per cent of barley producers cannot be wrong.

As for those people who refuse to listen to farmers, who say that they are friends of the Wheat Board or friends of the big grain companies, they are sure as heck not friends of the farmers. It is time to let barley farmers make a profit for a change.

Aboriginal AffairsOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

NDP

Jean Crowder NDP Nanaimo—Cowichan, BC

Mr. Speaker, after 140 years of attempted assimilation, with first nations stripped of their lands, their rights, their hopes and their dignity, today's land claim announcement is a half measure in bringing about true reconciliation.

Where is the apology on residential schools? Where is the action on indigenous rights at the UN? Where is the housing strategy? Where is the clean water strategy? Where is the action to lift first nations children out of poverty?

After years of empty broken promises by Liberal and Conservative governments, why should anyone trust the government to get the job done for first nations?

Aboriginal AffairsOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Calgary Centre-North Alberta

Conservative

Jim Prentice ConservativeMinister of Indian Affairs and Northern Development and Federal Interlocutor for Métis and Non-Status Indians

Mr. Speaker, to correct the hon. member, there has not yet been an announcement with respect to reform of the specific claims process, but there will be one in the fullness of time.

Aboriginal AffairsOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

NDP

Jean Crowder NDP Nanaimo—Cowichan, BC

Mr. Speaker, the rumour mill is running wild over the land claims, so let us talk about settling land claims. It is only one step in the long journey to reconciliation.

Shamefully, Canada is one of only two countries in the world that opposed the rights of indigenous peoples at the UN. As well, despite the House of Commons adopting a motion of apology for the residential schools tragedy, the Prime Minister has yet to issue one.

Will the minister today commit to dropping objections to the UN declaration and call on the Prime Minister to make a full apology to first nations for the residential schools tragedy?

Aboriginal AffairsOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Calgary Centre-North Alberta

Conservative

Jim Prentice ConservativeMinister of Indian Affairs and Northern Development and Federal Interlocutor for Métis and Non-Status Indians

Mr. Speaker, perhaps the hon. member could devote some of this new-found enthusiasm and fervour for human rights to the subject of first nations, particularly first nations women in Canada.

Bill C-44 has been before a committee of the House, including before the hon. member, for 83 days at this point, I am told. It is nine words long, including complicated words such as “is” and “the”. To this point, not a single amendment has been proposed by the hon. member or anyone else.

Perhaps she could dedicate the same enthusiasm to protecting first nation women in Canada.

Royal Canadian Mounted PoliceOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Liberal

Sue Barnes Liberal London West, ON

Mr. Speaker, on the RCMP pension scandal, the minister said he wanted fast answers and announced his half measures investigation instead of a full judicial inquiry.

That report, the Brown report, is due on June 15, but there is no sign of any report and no sign of the answers Canadians want, this despite the minister's promise to make the full report public.

Can the minister guarantee that the Brown report will be available this Friday as promised and made public in its entirety as promised? We hope this will help restore some public trust.