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House of Commons Hansard #70 of the 39th Parliament, 2nd Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was ndp.

Topics

ImmigrationOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Haldimand—Norfolk Ontario

Conservative

Diane Finley ConservativeMinister of Citizenship and Immigration

Mr. Speaker, the hon. member really should listen a little better. We want more immigrants to come here and we want to get them here sooner. We want them here sooner than the six years it now takes, thanks to the previous government's actions.

All of our instructions will be charter compliant and the charter does not allow discrimination by race, religion or ethnicity. The hon. member should know that by now. We want more people to get here sooner. We will get the job done.

Communications Security EstablishmentOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Bloc

Serge Ménard Bloc Marc-Aurèle-Fortin, QC

Mr. Speaker, there have already been three reports asking the federal government to clarify the law governing the Communications Security Establishment, the CSE, to better protect the privacy of Canadians who communicate with parties outside the country. Since May 2007, the CSE Commissioner himself has urged the government to act as quickly as possible.

How can the Minister of National Defence justify his inaction? Is it not because, in the end, he is perfectly comfortable with the potential invasion of Canadians' privacy?

Communications Security EstablishmentOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Okanagan—Coquihalla B.C.

Conservative

Stockwell Day ConservativeMinister of Public Safety

Mr. Speaker, questions about Canadians' security are very important. That is why the agencies, including the agency mentioned by my colleague, are included in the process that allows us to access information, to protect our citizens and also protect our citizens' privacy. Those two things are very important.

Communications Security EstablishmentOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Bloc

Serge Ménard Bloc Marc-Aurèle-Fortin, QC

Mr. Speaker, if it is important, he would already have acted. But it has been over a year and still nothing has been done.

It is currently the Minister of National Defence himself who can approve the interception of these kinds of private communications, as opposed to an impartial, competent judge. Given the importance of the rights we are talking about, will the minister agree that CSE should obtain the authorization of a judge to be able to intercept private communications of Canadians, even if they are with parties outside the country?

Communications Security EstablishmentOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Edmonton Centre Alberta

Conservative

Laurie Hawn ConservativeParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of National Defence

Mr. Speaker, the security of Canadians is paramount to this government, and CSEC is another tool the government employs to ensure that. CSEC directs its intelligence activities at foreign targets located outside Canada and is prohibited by the National Defence Act from targeting communications of Canadians. Section 273 of the act requires the authorization of the Minister of National Defence to intercept communications of foreign targets outside Canada, even if those communications originate or terminate in Canada.

I would also like to point out that the CSE commissioner, former Supreme Court Justice Gonthier, has confirmed the lawfulness of the CSEC activities review.

FinanceOral Questions

April 2nd, 2008 / 2:40 p.m.

Bloc

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

Mr. Speaker, the budget tabled by the Minister of Finance on February 26 opened the door to compensation for tax harmonization in Ontario. It states, “The Government is willing to work with the five provinces that still have [retail sales taxes] to help facilitate the transition to provincial value-added taxes harmonized with the GST.”

Is the Minister of Finance preparing to help Ontario, as he has already helped the Maritimes?

FinanceOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Whitby—Oshawa Ontario

Conservative

Jim Flaherty ConservativeMinister of Finance

Mr. Speaker, I thank the member for his question.

In the budget we have indicated to the provinces that do not have harmonized sales taxes with the GST that we would be prepared to work with them to accomplish that. Some discussions have taken place with some of those provinces, in the same way I might add, that in the budget last year we provided an incentive for those provinces that still had capital taxes to eliminate those capital taxes. Several provinces have taken steps in that regard. I am pleased to see that the province of Ontario took that step in its budget last week.

FinanceOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Bloc

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

Mr. Speaker, Quebec harmonized taxes in 1992-94, and did not receive a cent from the federal government to do so. Quebec estimates that it would have been entitled to $2 billion if Ottawa had made a similar offer for harmonization.

Will Quebec finally receive this $2 billion in compensation?

FinanceOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Whitby—Oshawa Ontario

Conservative

Jim Flaherty ConservativeMinister of Finance

Mr. Speaker, we work with the provinces continually with respect to tax matters and the integration of tax initiatives, tax policies, including the registered disability savings plan which we created, with thanks to the Bloc for its support on that, including the working income tax benefit to help people enter the workforce. There is regular facilitation of tax policy with the provinces.

The province of Quebec has also taken up the incentive with respect to capital taxes, moving toward their elimination in Quebec.

Canadian HeritageOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Liberal

Denis Coderre Liberal Bourassa, QC

Mr. Speaker, my question is for the Minister of Canadian Heritage, Status of Women and Official Languages and the former vice-president of the advertising firm, LXB.

Canadian HeritageOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Some hon. members

Oh, oh!

Canadian HeritageOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Liberal

The Speaker Liberal Peter Milliken

Order, please.

The member for Bourassa now has the floor.

Canadian HeritageOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Liberal

Denis Coderre Liberal Bourassa, QC

Mr. Speaker, I am not sure that they will applaud again.

My question is for the Minister of Canadian Heritage, Status of Women and Official Languages and the former vice-president of the advertising firm, LXB.

In speaking of censorship, La Rochefoucauld said, “Mediocre minds usually dismiss anything which reaches beyond their own understanding.” Does she really wish to be associated with the “great darkness” and have our culture, creative arts and film industry be controlled by her religious lobbyist friends?

Why is she so stubbornly opposed to amending Bill C-10 and thereby preventing us from stepping back in time 50 years? Duplessis, be gone!

Canadian HeritageOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Louis-Saint-Laurent Québec

Conservative

Josée Verner ConservativeMinister of Canadian Heritage

Mr. Speaker, I would like to welcome the new critic for heritage and official languages. Fortunately, they exercised enough good judgment not to make him critic for the status of women as well. However, the member should know that the government's intentions are the same as those announced in 2002 and 2003 by his former colleagues.

Canadian HeritageOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Liberal

Denis Coderre Liberal Bourassa, QC

Mr. Speaker, I have heard worse things from better people.

It will have an impact not only on artistic creation but also on the Canadian economy. In Quebec alone, the film industry generates 29,600 jobs and revenues of $1.14 billion. Tax credits represent 25% of funding for Canadian productions. Her power trip with her religious friends will ensure that banks will no longer want to finance the film industry.

What assurances does the minister of the Index of banned books need, besides the provisions of the Criminal Code, or has La Rochefoucauld found another censorship enthusiast?

Canadian HeritageOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Louis-Saint-Laurent Québec

Conservative

Josée Verner ConservativeMinister of Canadian Heritage

Mr. Speaker, there is no more and no less than what his former colleagues in the previous government intended in 2002 and 2003. And in a few minutes, I will be discussing this matter before the Senate committee.

Canadian Wheat BoardOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Liberal

Anita Neville Liberal Winnipeg South Centre, MB

Mr. Speaker, Bill C-50 rips the heart out of Canada's immigration system by cabinet orders exercised in secret. Bill C-10 is the ideological censorship of film and video productions by cabinet orders imposed in secret. Now there is Bill C-46, a sneak attack on the democratic rights of farmers to control the Wheat Board, again by cabinet orders imposed in secret.

Why does the government, which ran on accountability, have so much dirty work being done in secret?

Canadian Wheat BoardOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

York—Simcoe Ontario

Conservative

Peter Van Loan ConservativeLeader of the Government in the House of Commons and Minister for Democratic Reform

Mr. Speaker, it is apparently the Liberal leader who is into being controlling and secretive these days.

In my understanding, it is the leader of the Liberal Party who is trying to use the courts to censor the media. This approach is based on the idea that being publicly known as a Liberal in Quebec can harm one's reputation and cause irreparable damage. That may be true.

Canadian Wheat BoardOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Liberal

Anita Neville Liberal Winnipeg South Centre, MB

Mr. Speaker, I thank the minister for that irrelevant answer.

Bill C-46 kills democratic producer control over the Wheat Board. By the stroke of a pen in the middle of the night, the minister will have the power to destroy the board by issuing a secret cabinet order. There will be no reference to Parliament, or the courts, or the Wheat Board's producer directors. There will be no democratic right for farmers to vote.

Why has the minister launched a sneak attack on prairie farmers just to please his Republican friends in Washington?

Canadian Wheat BoardOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Battlefords—Lloydminster Saskatchewan

Conservative

Gerry Ritz ConservativeMinister of Agriculture and Agri-Food and Minister for the Canadian Wheat Board

Mr. Speaker, I had some great meetings with industry and the new U.S. secretary of agriculture in Washington the other day. Surprisingly, the Wheat Board did not come up at all.

In the meetings that I have with farmers across the country, of course the Wheat Board does come up in western Canada. They are willing to move ahead. They are wanting to move ahead. They are sick and tired of that party hiding the free market from them.

We will deliver for farmers. We always put farmers first.

Product SafetyOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Conservative

Mike Wallace Conservative Burlington, ON

Mr. Speaker, Conservatives are about good government for Canadians, where Liberals are only interested in what being a government can do for them.

It should come as no surprise that when the Liberals had the chance, they failed on all accounts to bolster and strengthen our product safety system in Canada. Thankfully, our government is taking action where the Liberals could not and would not.

Would the Minister of Health please update the House on how our government intends to strengthen Canadian confidence in the products that they use every day?

Product SafetyOral Questions

2:50 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 thank the hon. member for his analysis of the situation. I think he is absolutely correct. After being only interested in power and about their own self-justification, the Liberal Party members did nothing in the area of product safety and consumer safety for 13 long years.

Of course when we realized the situation, we directed our officials to do a thorough review. In the throne speech the Prime Minister moved forward with an ambitious plan to overhaul the product system in Canada. We are moving forward. The Prime Minister announced last December a new food and consumer safety action plan. We are delivering where the Liberals dithered.

Telecommunications IndustryOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

NDP

Charlie Angus NDP Timmins—James Bay, ON

Mr. Speaker, average Canadians are being ripped off by the telecom giants which are arbitrarily throttling information on the Internet. This is about a practice of a few large players being able to squeeze out smaller competition.

What steps will the Minister of Industry take to ensure that consumers who paid for access are not going to be ripped off, that badly needed competition will not be squeezed off, and send a message to the telecom giants that they have no business monkey wrenching with the free flow of information?

Telecommunications IndustryOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Calgary Centre-North Alberta

Conservative

Jim Prentice ConservativeMinister of Industry

Mr. Speaker, for the edification of my friend, the Internet is not regulated in Canada. We continue to monitor the discussion that is taking place, but there is no regulation of the relationship between Internet providers and consumers.

We will continue to see how the issue unfolds.

Telecommunications IndustryOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

NDP

Charlie Angus NDP Timmins—James Bay, ON

Mr. Speaker, the minister's hands-off approach to hands-on interference is bad news for the development of a Canadian innovation agenda. Net neutrality is the cornerstone of an innovative economy, because it is the consumer and the innovator who need to be in the driver's seat, not Ma Bell, not Rogers, not Vidéotron. They have no business deciding what information is in the fast lane or what information is in the slow lane.

Will the minister come out of the Gestetner age and take action on the issue of net throttling?