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House of Commons Hansard #60 of the 39th Parliament, 2nd Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was c-10.

Topics

EthicsOral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Port Moody—Westwood—Port Coquitlam B.C.

Conservative

James Moore ConservativeParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Public Works and Government Services and for the Pacific Gateway and the Vancouver-Whistler Olympics

Mr. Speaker, it is nonsense and a baseless charge and the Liberals know it. Perhaps my colleague in her supplementary question can try to convince this House, with just a bit of energy, that the offer made to the member for Newmarket—Aurora to join cabinet 48 hours before the vote had nothing to do with it.

EthicsOral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Liberal

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

Mr. Speaker, let us try again. The Canadian Oxford Dictionary's definition of the word “bribe” is “a sum of money or another reward offered or demanded in order to procure an (often illegal or dishonest) action or decision in favour of the giver”.

Keeping that in mind, could the Prime Minister explain how the offers made to Chuck Cadman to persuade him to vote with the Conservatives could be anything but an attempt to bribe him?

EthicsOral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Port Moody—Westwood—Port Coquitlam B.C.

Conservative

James Moore ConservativeParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Public Works and Government Services and for the Pacific Gateway and the Vancouver-Whistler Olympics

Mr. Speaker, there was no offer and no bribe. This is outrageous. This is all in the head of the member for Notre-Dame-de-Grâce—Lachine. The only offer put on the table was to have Chuck Cadman run as a candidate for the Conservative Party.

The EconomyOral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Bloc

Paul Crête Bloc Montmagny—L'Islet—Kamouraska—Rivière-du-Loup, QC

Mr. Speaker, in its press release announcing a 1/2 percentage point reduction in its prime rate, the Bank of Canada expressed its concern that “important downside risks to Canada's economic outlook...are materializing and, in some respects, intensifying”.

Will the Minister of Finance finally remove his rose-coloured glasses and follow the bank's lead by taking action and using part of the current year's surplus to strengthen the aid package for the manufacturing and forestry sectors? It is not too late to take action.

The EconomyOral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Macleod Alberta

Conservative

Ted Menzies ConservativeParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Finance

Mr. Speaker, my hon. colleague's question gives me the opportunity to remind him that in last fall's economic statement we sensed that there could be economic troubles on the horizon, so that is why we put in place $60 billion in aggressive action. We cut corporate income taxes. We cut personal income taxes. We lowered the GST, unlike the Liberals, who would like to raise the GST.

The EconomyOral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Bloc

Paul Crête Bloc Montmagny—L'Islet—Kamouraska—Rivière-du-Loup, QC

Mr. Speaker, the government must understand that the Canadian economy is operating at two different speeds: we have the western economy, which is spurred by oil, and Quebec and Ontario's economy where the manufacturing sector is in trouble. Its strategy of cutting taxes does not help manufacturing industries that are not turning a profit. He has until March 31 to take action.

Does the minister realize that, if the aid package for the manufacturing and forestry sectors is not bolstered, he will have favoured the oil companies over the manufacturing and forestry sectors and the rest of the economy?

The EconomyOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Macleod Alberta

Conservative

Ted Menzies ConservativeParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Finance

Mr. Speaker, I would like to remind all members of this House that there are 755,000 net new jobs in this country. We are tired of the opposition and the Bloc saying negative things about our economy. This economy is strong and it is because of this government that it has gotten there.

I would like to take the opportunity to thank the Liberals for their support last night in passing this budget.

Foreign AffairsOral Questions

March 5th, 2008 / 2:40 p.m.

Bloc

Vivian Barbot Bloc Papineau, QC

Mr. Speaker, on Monday, Mohamed Kohail, a Quebecker living in Saudi Arabia was condemned to death. All members of Parliament, with the exception of the Conservatives, condemn this barbaric penalty both in Canada and abroad. In a similar case in the United States, Canada did not intervene.

Does the Minister of Foreign Affairs realize that acting on a case by case basis goes against the fundamental values of Quebeckers with respect to capital punishment?

Foreign AffairsOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Calgary East Alberta

Conservative

Deepak Obhrai ConservativeParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Foreign Affairs

Mr. Speaker, the Government of Canada stands ready to assist the family in pursuing its appeal through the justice system in Saudi Arabia. We are in close contact with the family and will continue to provide consular assistance. We are very closely monitoring this case and we will seek clemency in this case.

Foreign AffairsOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Bloc

Vivian Barbot Bloc Papineau, QC

Mr. Speaker, unfortunately my question was on the government's approach to capital punishment. The Conservative's approach is bad policy that has no place in diplomacy. Saudi Arabia and the United States both have capital punishment. Canada is implying that the death penalty is acceptable in the United States but not in Saudi Arabia.

Does the minister realize that his case-by-case approach is completely unacceptable and that he is discrediting all of us?

Foreign AffairsOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Niagara Falls Ontario

Conservative

Rob Nicholson ConservativeMinister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada

Mr. Speaker, there has been no change in the government's policy and we will continue to look at these cases on a case by case basis.

EthicsOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Liberal

Colleen Beaumier Liberal Brampton West, ON

Mr. Speaker, the government has been very evasive on how many meetings and other attempts were made to bribe Chuck Cadman to vote with the Conservatives. It has taken a week, but the Prime Minister's office is now claiming there was no $1 million life insurance policy.

Is Sandra Buckler calling Dona Cadman, Conservative candidate in Surrey North, a liar? Is the rest of the Cadman family also lying, according to the Prime Minister's office, or has Ms. Buckler misspoken again?

EthicsOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Port Moody—Westwood—Port Coquitlam B.C.

Conservative

James Moore ConservativeParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Public Works and Government Services and for the Pacific Gateway and the Vancouver-Whistler Olympics

Mr. Speaker, I know my colleague understands that what she has just said here is actually really quite serious. If she really believes that our government has committed a crime, then she ought to have the courage to say it outside of the House where people who she has falsely accused of a crime can legally defend themselves. She knows better than that.

We have been clear on this. The only offer made to Chuck Cadman was to have him rejoin our caucus and run as a Conservative.

I have a bit of time, so again I want to thank my colleague from Brampton West for showing her confidence in our government in voting for our budget last night.

EthicsOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Liberal

Raymond Chan Liberal Richmond, BC

Mr. Speaker, through you to the Prime Minister, three people who knew and loved Chuck Cadman have told their story. His wife, his daughter and his son-in-law all tell the same story, exactly the same. They all said Chuck Cadman was offered a $1 million life insurance policy by the Conservative Party in exchange for his vote.

Why would they all lie?

EthicsOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Port Moody—Westwood—Port Coquitlam B.C.

Conservative

James Moore ConservativeParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Public Works and Government Services and for the Pacific Gateway and the Vancouver-Whistler Olympics

Mr. Speaker, my colleague from Richmond served with Chuck Cadman. I do not think he would want to call him a liar, but I think that is what he just did in his question.

None of the people that my colleague from Richmond cited were at the meeting on May 19, the only meeting that took place between Conservative Party officials and Chuck Cadman. None of them were there, nor was the member for Richmond. The three people who were there all say the exact same thing, that no offer of a $1 million bribe was made to Chuck Cadman.

That is a ridiculous and outrageous suggestion and my colleague should have the courage to say it outside the House of Commons if he really believes it.

EthicsOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Liberal

Roger Valley Liberal Kenora, ON

Mr. Speaker, one thing is clear: Chuck Cadman wanted nothing to do with the Conservative Party.

First, the Prime Minister denied that anything was offered to Chuck Cadman. Then in a desperate bid to explain, he comes up with this repayable loan story. How can the Prime Minister expect Canadians to believe that his operatives offered a loan to a dying man?

The bottom line is this. Even if this is a story, is it not still a bribe?

EthicsOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Port Moody—Westwood—Port Coquitlam B.C.

Conservative

James Moore ConservativeParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Public Works and Government Services and for the Pacific Gateway and the Vancouver-Whistler Olympics

Mr. Speaker, that is silly. What we have said, I will say again. The Liberals try to avoid the central fact of this. The central fact is obvious and is clear and it is before them. Nothing illegal or inappropriate happened here whatsoever.

All that was expressed was our desire to see Chuck Cadman run as a Conservative, to defeat the Liberal government at the time and to present himself as a Conservative in the subsequent campaign. That is all that was offered to Chuck Cadman.

It is clear that if my colleague has any evidence to the contrary, he would say it outside of the House of Commons, but again he does not have the courage to do so because he does not believe his own story.

EthicsOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Liberal

Jean-Claude D'Amours Liberal Madawaska—Restigouche, NB

Mr. Speaker, it seems, therefore, that the Prime Minister “forgot” to tell us last week that, two years ago, he told Dona Cadman that he knew nothing about the insurance policy.

Why, then, did the Prime Minister not ask the police to investigate this offer of an insurance policy when Ms. Cadman herself told him about this bribery attempt? Why did he not do that? Does he have something to hide?

EthicsOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Port Moody—Westwood—Port Coquitlam B.C.

Conservative

James Moore ConservativeParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Public Works and Government Services and for the Pacific Gateway and the Vancouver-Whistler Olympics

Mr. Speaker, there are two things here. First, there was no such offer. Second, the police and the RCMP have their own mandates and are independent of the government. They carry out their mandates independently of our government and every government in this country. The offer my hon. colleague is referring to was never made.

Anti-Drug StrategyOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Conservative

Gord Brown Conservative Leeds—Grenville, ON

Mr. Speaker, last November when our Prime Minister announced Canada's national anti-drug strategy, we committed to do something that has not been done for almost 20 years in Canada: communicate with parents and youth about the dangers of illicit drugs. We committed to do so because we are very concerned about the damage and pain these drugs cause families, and we intend to reverse the trend toward vague, ambiguous messages that have characterized Canadian attitudes in the recent past.

Can the Minister of Health give us an update on the status of Canada's national anti-drug strategy?

Anti-Drug StrategyOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Parry Sound—Muskoka Ontario

Conservative

Tony Clement ConservativeMinister of Health and Minister for the Federal Economic Development Initiative for Northern Ontario

Mr. Speaker, I think we can all agree that when one in four young people across this country has used at least one illegal drug, when twice as many Ontario kids are smoking pot as tobacco, when the number of young Canadians smoking marijuana has almost doubled in the last 10 years, it is time to speak up.

That is why today, along with the Minister of Justice, the Minister of Public Safety and the Minister of Public Works, I was pleased to launch the very first advertisements in the first anti-drug campaign undertaken by Canada's government in almost 20 years. It has been designed with a lot of input from public and school health associations. This will give parents the tools they need to help their kids.

The BudgetOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

NDP

Peggy Nash NDP Parkdale—High Park, ON

Mr. Speaker, Canada's middle class families are struggling to make ends meet.

The Prime Minister's number one election adviser says the Conservative agenda is to gradually re-engineer the federal government's spending powers. Economists suggest that corporate tax cuts will permanently slash the total fiscal capacity of government and along with it the capacity to fund the programs that people need.

Will the federal finance minister admit that the budget will permanently deplete Canada's ability to fund social programs?

The BudgetOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Macleod Alberta

Conservative

Ted Menzies ConservativeParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Finance

Mr. Speaker, absolutely not. Let me tell the hon. member about some of the things that this budget will do.

We are in the second longest period of economic expansion in our history. The budget that we passed yesterday, with the help of the Liberals by the way, will continue on that solid road of growth. We will be the only G-7 member with an ongoing budget surplus and reduction in total debt burden.

It is this government that is providing the economic stimulus to create more and more jobs in this country.

The BudgetOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

NDP

Peggy Nash NDP Parkdale—High Park, ON

Yes, Mr. Speaker, but the across the board tax cuts contained in the government's budget are taking money out of the programs and services that working and middle class families need to weather the upcoming economic storm.

Ontario alone lost 77,000 manufacturing jobs. What did the budget do? It stole $55 billion from the employment insurance fund to cover the steep costs of the government's corporate giveaways.

Will the finance minister admit that Tom Flanagan is right that reducing the fiscal capacity of government to build for future generations is the goal of the Conservatives' agenda?

The BudgetOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Medicine Hat Alberta

Conservative

Monte Solberg ConservativeMinister of Human Resources and Social Development

Mr. Speaker, I have to point out to the member that not only are taxes going down, but we also see important spending going up, for instance, investment in the guaranteed income supplement so that seniors are able to earn income and not face a clawback.

We also see important new investments in post-secondary education, which will ensure that young people in low and middle income families can have a chance to go off to university and college. This is one of the most important reforms in education in a generation.

We are very proud of the support that we are lending to all kinds of families around this country, with the help, by the way, of the Liberals across the way. I would like to thank them for that. We appreciate it.