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House of Commons Hansard #91 of the 40th Parliament, 3rd Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was women.

Topics

Foreign AffairsOral Questions

2:30 p.m.

Liberal

Raymonde Folco Liberal Laval—Les Îles, QC

Mr. Speaker, in a diplomatic note sent on October 23, Canada said that it was inclined to favourably consider Omar Khadr's application. The agreement negotiated would never have been possible without that guarantee. That proves that the government and the Minister of Foreign Affairs were involved.

Why is this Conservative government incapable of telling the truth? Why did the minister mislead the media, the House of Commons and, especially, Canadians?

Foreign AffairsOral Questions

2:30 p.m.

Pontiac Québec

Conservative

Lawrence Cannon ConservativeMinister of Foreign Affairs

Mr. Speaker, I repeat that the government did not participate in the negotiations on the sentence, and the prosecutor made that very clear. The American government agreed to allow Omar Khadr to return to Canada. We will do everything we can to ensure that the agreement reached between the American government and Omar Khadr is carried out.

International Co-operationOral Questions

2:30 p.m.

Liberal

Maria Minna Liberal Beaches—East York, ON

Mr. Speaker, officials from the CIDA minister's own department have said that KAIROS continues to meet all the requirements to qualify for CIDA funding to support development overseas. However, the minister continues to stonewall this House in trying to explain why she denied its funding.

Her officials recommended that KAIROS should receive funding. Does she not trust her own officials, or is it that she is not actually in charge of her own department?

International Co-operationOral Questions

2:30 p.m.

Durham Ontario

Conservative

Bev Oda ConservativeMinister of International Cooperation

Mr. Speaker, I reiterate that this government wants to ensure that its international assistance is actually having an impact and making a difference for the families and children in developing countries. That is why we were proud to support Save A Family, based in London, Ontario, that is going to be working in communities in Africa and other countries, to actually work with families and work with communities to ensure that they have a better future.

International Co-operationOral Questions

2:30 p.m.

Liberal

Maria Minna Liberal Beaches—East York, ON

Mr. Speaker, the minister is insulting Canadians with that answer. Documents from CIDA prove that her officials told her that KAIROS absolutely fit government policy, yet for months the minister has been misleading Canadians and showing contempt for the good faith and good work of millions of Canadians who support KAIROS.

Will the minister now apologize for misrepresenting the truth and finally approve funding for KAIROS?

International Co-operationOral Questions

2:30 p.m.

Durham Ontario

Conservative

Bev Oda ConservativeMinister of International Cooperation

Mr. Speaker, it is my pleasure to tell the hon. member opposite that what this government will do is make sure that there are more schools, that there is more education, more health, more medicine, more produce for farmers, more ability for them to feed themselves, stay healthy and ensure that healthy babies are going to be alive.

We are supporting members of KAIROS when they have individual proposals that are actually going to have an impact on people living in these communities. We have done that in the past and we will continue to do that in the future.

Arts and CultureOral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Bloc

Carole Lavallée Bloc Saint-Bruno—Saint-Hubert, QC

Mr. Speaker, a survey of about 300 cultural organizations by the International Exchange for the Performing Arts (CINARS) confirms that, as expected, the federal government's cancellation of the PromArt and Trade Routes programs in support of international tours has had a devastating effect: more than 175 international tours have been cancelled and $16 million has been lost.

Will the government increase funding for the Canada Council to support international cultural tours?

Arts and CultureOral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Port Moody—Westwood—Port Coquitlam B.C.

Conservative

James Moore ConservativeMinister of Canadian Heritage and Official Languages

Mr. Speaker, the Government of Canada has tabled four budgets in this House, and in each of these four budgets, funding for the arts and culture has been increased. The member referred to the Canada Council. We increased its budget by 20% and the Bloc Québécois voted against this measure. Why?

Arts and CultureOral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Bloc

Carole Lavallée Bloc Saint-Bruno—Saint-Hubert, QC

Mr. Speaker, the Canadian Heritage budget may have increased, but artists do not have more money, they have less.

The minister told the House that he had transferred the money for artists to the Olympic torch relay. The crux of the problem is that the Conservatives do not acknowledge the economic impact of the cultural sector and they despise any type of support for a nation's cultural expression.

Will the government finally understand and restore funding for international tours by further increasing the Canada Council's budget?

Arts and CultureOral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Port Moody—Westwood—Port Coquitlam B.C.

Conservative

James Moore ConservativeMinister of Canadian Heritage and Official Languages

Mr. Speaker, we increased the Canada Council's budget and the Bloc Québécois voted against it. That is what the Bloc Québécois dared to vote against. We also provided funding for the Festival de la Galette, which they voted against, the FestiVoix, which they voted against, and the Festival Envol et Macadam, which they voted against. We also decided to fund the jazz festival and more, and they voted against it.

Every time we increase funding for the arts and culture, the Bloc Québécois votes against our measures. We are committed to a Canada-wide program that is good for the whole country and all artists, and the Bloc opposes our proposals.

Access to InformationOral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Bloc

Christiane Gagnon Bloc Québec, QC

Mr. Speaker, 20 years after the failure of the Meech Lake accord, the Conservative government is still refusing to make public the federal cabinet documents and minutes from the Meech Lake accord negotiations, although the Access to Information Act would permit this.

Why is the government circumventing the law? What does it have to hide?

Access to InformationOral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Louis-Saint-Laurent Québec

Conservative

Josée Verner ConservativeMinister of Intergovernmental Affairs

Mr. Speaker, civil servants process access to information requests and they do so by enforcing the relevant exemptions under the Access to Information Act. Section 14 of the act states that they may:

refuse to disclose...information the disclosure of which could reasonably be expected to be injurious to the conduct by the Government of Canada of federal-provincial affairs.

That is what those who processed this request did by applying this section.

Access to InformationOral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Bloc

Christiane Gagnon Bloc Québec, QC

Mr. Speaker, to justify censoring cabinet discussions about the Meech Lake negotiations, the Prime Minister's department is hiding behind section 14 and is saying that this information could be “injurious to the conduct of federal-provincial affairs”.

Can the government tell us what it is trying to hide? What is so serious that it could make relations between Quebec and Ottawa worse, as if that were even possible?

Access to InformationOral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Louis-Saint-Laurent Québec

Conservative

Josée Verner ConservativeMinister of Intergovernmental Affairs

Mr. Speaker, I just told the member from Québec that civil servants process access to information requests. They applied the law and section 14.

National DefenceOral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Liberal

Dominic LeBlanc Liberal Beauséjour, NB

Mr. Speaker, last week the Conservatives were warned not to make the same mistakes with their $16 billion fighter jet contract. However, they are not listening. They have not released the operational requirements and have not held a public competition in Canada. The government is moving forward on the largest military contract in Canadian history with no transparency at all.

Why are the Conservatives so irresponsible with taxpayers' money?

National DefenceOral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Central Nova Nova Scotia

Conservative

Peter MacKay ConservativeMinister of National Defence

Mr. Speaker, I would ask the member for Beauséjour to open his ears to the words from members of his own party.

Senator Colin Kenny said that he was delighted we are going ahead with the joint strike fighter. He said:

We can't afford to lose ground in the aerospace industry, and our involvement in this contract will create new jobs and opportunities

Senator Dallaire said the F-35 stealth jet is an “excellent” plane and Canada should be buying more of them.

This is coming from the member who was involved in the cancellation of the Sea King replacement program and bought used submarines from the U.K. Whether it is helicopters that will not go up or subs that will not go down, the Liberal Party cannot fly and cannot float on military procurement.

National DefenceOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Liberal

Dominic LeBlanc Liberal Beauséjour, NB

Mr. Speaker, the waste does not end at reckless sole-sourced defence contracts.

Here is a quick tally from last year: consultants, up $3 billion; advertising, almost $200 million; and the Prime Minister's propaganda budget, $10 million, 30% more than two years ago. Ten million dollars is a lot of money for a Prime Minister who will never answer an unscripted question and has not had an open, transparent, public town hall meeting since he became Prime Minister.

How can the government justify all this waste?

National DefenceOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Central Nova Nova Scotia

Conservative

Peter MacKay ConservativeMinister of National Defence

Mr. Speaker, Liberal credibility on procurement for the military is zero.

Let us listen to what the former defence minister, Senator Art Eggleton had to say. He said, “Our participation will greatly enhance interoperability with our allies”, which is one of our key defence objectives.

The member for Beauséjour completely agreed with him when he was the parliamentary secretary to the minister of defence in 2002. He said:

Our cooperation with the United States, for example on joint strike fighters has earned Canadian companies substantial industrial benefits.

The Liberals are being so cynical in promising to cancel the F-35s, the same thing they did with the Sea King replacement program. They have zero credibility.

Economic DevelopmentOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Liberal

Frank Valeriote Liberal Guelph, ON

Mr. Speaker, despite giving a company in his riding 5.2 million FedDev dollars under the guise of creating jobs, it did not. The same firm, COM DEV, in fact fired 81 employees.

On the other hand, Cynthia Moyer's exemplary FedDev application was rejected for arbitrary reasons, and her firm closed.

Why is the government funding firms without a strategy and funding firms that cut jobs rather than create them? Why do they refuse to help small and medium size businesses in southwestern Ontario? Where is the fairness for those hardest hit by this recession?

Economic DevelopmentOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Cambridge Ontario

Conservative

Gary Goodyear ConservativeMinister of State (Science and Technology) (Federal Economic Development Agency for Southern Ontario)

Mr. Speaker, the member needs to get his facts correct.

The unfortunate layoffs at COM DEV are not related to FedDev funding. Our investment is in new micro-satellite technology for a growing part of that company that is creating jobs in southern Ontario.

Economic DevelopmentOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Liberal

Frank Valeriote Liberal Guelph, ON

Mr. Speaker, while the minister makes up excuses, the Canadian Federation of Independent Business says its members are dissatisfied with the programs provided by FedDev.

Its members say the application process is time consuming and cumbersome and there is no meaningful way to inquire about applications, and no help from FedDev. Lost jobs in southwestern Ontario have been mostly replaced by contractor part-time service industry jobs, not jobs of the future.

When will the minister work for small businesses that create seven out of eight new jobs, instead of providing one-off funding for companies that cut jobs?

Economic DevelopmentOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Cambridge Ontario

Conservative

Gary Goodyear ConservativeMinister of State (Science and Technology) (Federal Economic Development Agency for Southern Ontario)

Mr. Speaker, once again the member is completely wrong. This government's number one priority is to create jobs and stimulate the economy, and we are doing just that. That is exactly why the Prime Minister set up FedDev Ontario with a five year mandate and $1 billion.

I will point out to the House that since May 2009, 185,000 new jobs have been created in southern Ontario. What is really of concern is that the Liberals voted against that kind of stimulus for Ontario. Why did they do that?

National DefenceOral Questions

November 1st, 2010 / 2:40 p.m.

Conservative

Bernard Généreux Conservative Montmagny—L'Islet—Kamouraska—Rivière-du-Loup, QC

Mr. Speaker, last summer, our government committed to buying F-35 fighter jets to replace the aging CF-18 fleet. This decision was made a full 13 years after the program was launched. During these 13 years, a bidding process was organized, and Lockheed Martin was awarded the contract to manufacture this first-generation fighter jet.

Could the Minister of Industry speak about the advantages of our government's decision for Canada's aerospace industry?

National DefenceOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Parry Sound—Muskoka Ontario

Conservative

Tony Clement ConservativeMinister of Industry

I will be happy to, Mr. Speaker. Our government has taken the fourth and next step of this 13 year F-35 program to ensure the Canadian aerospace industry would benefit the greatest and our forces would have the best.

Last week, however, the Liberal leader took time out to commit to return the Canadian Forces to the times of the decade of darkness and to shut down Canadian aerospace jobs in such places as Montreal, Winnipeg, Mississauga, British Columbia, eastern Canada. I call on the Liberal leader to retract his position and to stand up for Canadian aerospace jobs.

Harmonized Sales TaxOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

NDP

Linda Duncan NDP Edmonton Strathcona, AB

Mr. Speaker, I am receiving complaints from Albertans who are being charged HST on many transactions, including mailing gifts, sending courier packages and hiring Alberta-based moving companies to send goods to provinces that have adopted the harmonized sales tax.

The Prime Minister, the Minister of Finance and all of the Conservative members of Parliament from Alberta voted to impose the HST on Albertans. Did the government consult anyone in Alberta on the implications of the HST and if so, whom?