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House of Commons Hansard #71 of the 39th Parliament, 2nd Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was immigrants.

Topics

Sealing IndustryOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Conservative

Fabian Manning Conservative Avalon, NL

Mr. Speaker, the seal hunt is an important part of the economy and cultural heritage in Newfoundland and Labrador, Quebec, the Maritimes and, indeed, all of Canada. Our government has shown leadership in defending and promoting the hunt on the international stage.

Here at home there have been reports that the vessel the Farley Mowat, which is owned by the Sea Shepherd Conservation Society, has endangered the lives of sealers on the ice.

Will the Minister of Fisheries and Oceans please advise the House and the people involved in this important industry what action our government will be taking to address these concerns?

Sealing IndustryOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

St. John's South—Mount Pearl Newfoundland & Labrador

Conservative

Loyola Hearn ConservativeMinister of Fisheries and Oceans

Mr. Speaker, Canada has a sustainable, well-managed seal hunt. We will not tolerate the reckless antics of the Sea Shepherd Society.

However, I wonder if the Leader of the Opposition feels the same way. His co-leader, Elizabeth May, is listed as a member of the advisory board of the Sea Shepherd Society. Does he think sealers are vicious killers? Has the leader called her to ask her to advise the Sea Shepherd Society to back off?

We will protect our sealers. We will pursue charges.

Science and TechnologyOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

NDP

Paul Dewar NDP Ottawa Centre, ON

Mr. Speaker, for weeks now I have been trying to get an answer from the Minister of Foreign Affairs regarding his responsibility under the Remote Sensing Space Systems Act. The act requires him to make a decision regarding the licence of RADARSAT-2, based on Canada's national interest and the defence of Canada.

I will try again. Will the Minister of Foreign Affairs please stand and let us know if he is aware of his responsibility for the licence of RADARSAT-2?

Science and TechnologyOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Calgary Centre-North Alberta

Conservative

Jim Prentice ConservativeMinister of Industry

Mr. Speaker, I think it is clear to members of the House that when we are dealing with members of the NDP, not only is their remote sensing defective, their up close sensing does not work either. We dealt with this yesterday.

Clearly, on March 20, MDA Geospatial submitted to the Minister of Foreign Affairs, as it was required to do, a request for licence transfer. That cannot be dealt with until such time as I have dealt with, under the Investment Canada Act, the initial application.

Science and TechnologyOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

NDP

Paul Dewar NDP Ottawa Centre, ON

Mr. Speaker, surely the minister, or someone over there, understands the importance of RADARSAT-2 to our sovereignty. This was a technology bought by Canadians, made by Canadians. This is our lens on our territory.

How will the government monitor the north when it gives away the satellite by Google Earth? Is that its plan? We want to know what the government's commitment is to keep our technology here. We want the foreign affairs minister to please stand, take action now and quit hiding.

Science and TechnologyOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Calgary Centre-North Alberta

Conservative

Jim Prentice ConservativeMinister of Industry

Mr. Speaker, once again, the Minister of Foreign Affairs has responsibilities under that legislation. That is not invoked until such time as the Investment Canada application is dealt with. I will deal with that application. I will deal with it in due course, and I will deal with it according to the full responsibility under the Investment Canada Act.

Canadian HeritageOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Liberal

Denis Coderre Liberal Bourassa, QC

Mr. Speaker, the new blacklist minister gave a pitiful performance yesterday in the other place, confirming the audiovisual industry's fears about the Conservatives' real intentions when it comes to censoring future productions. Not only did her deputy minister confirm that there are already regulations in place whereby tax credits could be refused, but she was unable to explain the reason for her power trip, why she insisted on having the power to censure.

What film would she have liked to blacklist: Borderline, Juno, Eastern Promises or Porky's?

Canadian HeritageOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Louis-Saint-Laurent Québec

Conservative

Josée Verner ConservativeMinister of Canadian Heritage

Mr. Speaker, nothing could be further from the truth. Our government does not intend to engage in censorship. On the contrary, the government supports freedom of expression.

As I explained yesterday and as my deputy minister confirmed, in contrast to what the member for Bourassa is saying, at present, because of a legislative gap that has existed since 2005, if a producer were prosecuted under the Criminal Code, I would have no way of preventing that producer from receiving public money.

Canadian HeritageOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Liberal

Denis Coderre Liberal Bourassa, QC

Mr. Speaker, in any event, the Liberals are against censorship.

Rocked by criticism, our new national censor awkwardly suggested a so-called compromise yesterday and asked the industry to come up with guidelines, when she knows that guidelines have no legal force. A guideline can be changed at any time, without the consent of Parliament.

If the minister really wants to work with the industry, why does she not just agree to get rid of her government's trick and become the Minister of Canadian Heritage for once, rather than the minister of censorship?

Canadian HeritageOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Louis-Saint-Laurent Québec

Conservative

Josée Verner ConservativeMinister of Canadian Heritage

Mr. Speaker, the member for Bourassa can grandstand all he likes, but he knows that the wording of the clause in Bill C-10 is exactly the same as what his former colleagues, ministers Manley and Copps, included in a press release in 2003.

It is exactly the same thing, but five years later, suddenly the Liberals are asking questions.

EthicsOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Liberal

Susan Kadis Liberal Thornhill, ON

Mr. Speaker, “opposition parties reflect the views of two-thirds of Canadians, and the government must take them into account in order to make a minority Parliament work”. Who said that? It was the Prime Minister when he sat in opposition in 2004. He also said that the opposition has “a majority on parliamentary committees” and the “government will have no choice but to listen” to them.

Why does the government no longer believe in democracy when it comes to the Prime Minister appearing before a committee to explain that tape on which he says that “financial considerations” were offered to Chuck Cadman?

EthicsOral Questions

2:50 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

Again, Mr. Speaker, we have been clear and consistent on this issue from the very beginning. The Liberals can keep trying to advance it and try to keep throwing mud at members of Parliament and at the Prime Minister, but their accusations are false and they are proven to be so every day.

Human RightsOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Liberal

Ralph Goodale Liberal Wascana, SK

Mr. Speaker, I am sure all members are shocked by what appear to be racist, sexist and homophobic remarks attributed to the Conservative member for Regina—Lumsden—Lake Centre. The previous Conservative member for this same riding, Mr. Spencer, was dumped by his party for similarly offensive attitudes.

Will the government House leader require the member to step aside today from his duties as parliamentary secretary until this matter can be properly investigated and resolved?

Human RightsOral 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, as I indicated earlier, we have not seen this 16 or 17 year old videotape, which I gather was released while we have been here in the House. It will, however, receive due attention.

JusticeOral Questions

April 3rd, 2008 / 2:50 p.m.

Bloc

Carole Freeman Bloc Châteauguay—Saint-Constant, QC

Mr. Speaker, the member for Edmonton—Sherwood Park published a letter in Wednesday's edition of the National Post in which he stated that his bill will ensure that unborn children will have the same protection as other human beings under criminal law.

Can the Minister of Justice, who voted for this bill, explain this new legal concept of the unborn child?

JusticeOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Niagara Falls Ontario

Conservative

Rob Nicholson ConservativeMinister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada

Mr. Speaker, I think the hon. member is referring to a private member's bill that is now before the committee. I urge the committee to have a look at that bill and make its recommendations to Parliament.

With respect to the government, the government has no plans to introduce legislation in that area.

JusticeOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Bloc

Nicole Demers Bloc Laval, QC

Mr. Speaker, the Standing Committee on Status of Women passed a Bloc Québécois motion advising the Standing Committee on Justice and Human Rights of its unequivocal opposition to Bill C-484, which undermines a woman's right to abortion.

Will the Minister of Canadian Heritage, Status of Women and Official Languages agree to take over where the committee left off and also approach the Minister of Justice, or will she abandon women once again?

JusticeOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Niagara Falls Ontario

Conservative

Rob Nicholson ConservativeMinister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada

Mr. Speaker, the hon. member is welcome to make any representations before the committee that is having a look at that private member's bill, but as I indicated, the government has no plans to introduce legislation in that area.

Tobacco IndustryOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Liberal

Lloyd St. Amand Liberal Brant, ON

Mr. Speaker, on February 7 in committee I asked the Minister of Agriculture what he was willing to do to help tobacco farmers. He claimed that he was moving on the file and that I and others should “stay tuned”. He repeated this answer in the House on February 14.

Quite to the contrary, the minister has provided nothing for tobacco farmers, who are in very desperate straits. Why did the minister say he would take action sooner rather than later if he actually intended to do nothing whatsoever?

Tobacco IndustryOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Stormont—Dundas—South Glengarry Ontario

Conservative

Guy Lauzon ConservativeParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food and for the Federal Economic Development Initiative for Northern Ontario

Mr. Speaker, our minister is doing a lot. Our minister had some very frank conversations with the tobacco industry. This week, as a matter of fact, he met with the Ontario agriculture minister, Ms. Leona Dombrowsky. He has also met with the manufacturers and growers, he has had discussions, and they are willing to continue.

What we are trying to say is that he made a commitment that he is willing to continue to work with those members. He has also put in the member for Elgin—Middlesex—London as chair of a task force of local municipal leaders to find existing programs to help access that assistance.

AfghanistanOral Questions

2:55 p.m.

Conservative

Leon Benoit Conservative Vegreville—Wainwright, AB

Mr. Speaker, the Afghanistan motion recently passed by this House outlined our assessment that NATO needs to provide more troops in southern Afghanistan. Our Prime Minister, our Minister of National Defence and our Minister of Foreign Affairs have been working hard at pressing this point with our allies.

Yesterday we heard important news coming out of the summit. The French have committed to send more troops to eastern Afghanistan and the Americans have agreed to bolster our troops in the south. Can the Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of National Defence tell us what this means for Canada and for NATO?

AfghanistanOral Questions

2:55 p.m.

Edmonton Centre Alberta

Conservative

Laurie Hawn ConservativeParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of National Defence

Mr. Speaker, I thank my hon. colleague for his strong support of the Canadian Forces. We are very pleased that our American and French allies have stepped up. Canada made the request to NATO. Our allies listened to us and have responded. It is a tribute to the leadership of the Prime Minister, the Minister of National Defence and the Minister of Foreign Affairs.

The House recently passed a motion calling for this kind of support from NATO. That support has now been delivered. That check is in the box. There are a couple of other requirements that we are looking for. We are making great progress in that area. We will get that job done as well, as we always do.

Gasoline PricesOral Questions

2:55 p.m.

NDP

Brian Masse NDP Windsor West, ON

Mr. Speaker, gas prices in Canada are on the rise again. As working families were taking their children to school this morning, gas stations across this country were jacking up prices at the pump. They cannot blame it on hurricane Katrina any more. This time it is speculators and profiteers fuelled by pure greed.

The Competition Bureau has proven useless on this file and has not protected Canadians. Canadians need a real solution: an oil and gas monitoring and regulatory system. Why will this Conservative government not get the job done?

Gasoline PricesOral Questions

2:55 p.m.

Cypress Hills—Grasslands Saskatchewan

Conservative

David Anderson ConservativeParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Natural Resources and for the Canadian Wheat Board

Mr. Speaker, we are getting the job done. We understand the burden that high gas prices put on Canadian families and the cost of living for everyone. We have taken direct steps to help to reduce those gas prices and the cost of living with significant changes, particularly tax reductions, including cuts to the GST. We are focused on energy efficiency and we are getting the job done for Canadians.

The EnvironmentOral Questions

2:55 p.m.

NDP

Yvon Godin NDP Acadie—Bathurst, NB

Mr. Speaker, my question is for the Minister of the Environment.

The Bas-Caraquet weather station in New Brunswick provides an essential service to residents and fishers. It helps to keep them safe. There are rumours that the government plans to close the station. I wrote two letters to the Minister of the Environment, one in October and another in February, asking him what he planned to do, and he never replied.

Does the minister intend to close the Bas-Caraquet weather station or not? If not, will he provide the money to update it?