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House of Commons Hansard #116 of the 40th Parliament, 3rd Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was haitian.

Topics

HaitiOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Thornhill Ontario

Conservative

Peter Kent ConservativeMinister of State of Foreign Affairs (Americas)

Mr. Speaker, again I thank my colleague for his question and his contribution to communications on this crisis.

Our government continues to stand with the people of Haiti as they rebuild their country. We are all concerned with the violence that has taken place following the release of the preliminary election results. Indeed today the Minister of Foreign Affairs met with the U.S. Secretary of State and the Secretary of Foreign Affairs of Mexico, and they agreed to continue to work together, to collaborate and to encourage all political actors in Haiti to fulfill expectations of them.

Public SafetyOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Conservative

Garry Breitkreuz Conservative Yorkton—Melville, SK

Mr. Speaker, currently criminals who commit sexual offences against children are eligible for a pardon. Victims and law-abiding citizens think this is unacceptable, and our Conservative government agrees.

Could the Minister of Public Safety update this House on the government's plans to move forward with this important bill?

Public SafetyOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Provencher Manitoba

Conservative

Vic Toews ConservativeMinister of Public Safety

Mr. Speaker, nearly six months ago, our Conservative government introduced legislation that would eliminate pardons for dangerous criminals. Unlike the Liberal-led coalition, we do not put the rights of criminals before those of victims.

Our Conservative members on the public safety committee have called a special meeting to advance this important bill, a bill that would prevent those who commit sexual offences against children from ever receiving a pardon.

Canada-U.S. BorderOral Questions

December 13th, 2010 / 2:45 p.m.

NDP

Paul Dewar NDP Ottawa Centre, ON

Mr. Speaker, while North America's foreign ministers meet in Wakefield, it is what is happening in the backrooms that is really concerning Canadians. A deal to give the U.S. access to personal information of Canadians and more influence over our security and immigration laws is apparently in the works. Even with this government, it is shocking that our sovereignty and private information would be secretly signed away.

What exactly is in the plan? When will it be made public? When will this Parliament see that to debate and discuss it?

Canada-U.S. BorderOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Provencher Manitoba

Conservative

Vic Toews ConservativeMinister of Public Safety

Mr. Speaker, our government is of course always concerned about the safety and security of our citizens. We also understand that in order to grow our economy, we need to work together with our allies and especially our closest ally, the United States.

We want to see an open border that ensures that there is traffic between our countries in terms of legitimate goods and travellers and yet ensures that our joint security interests are protected.

AfghanistanOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

NDP

Paul Dewar NDP Ottawa Centre, ON

Mr. Speaker, we would like to see an open debate.

However, the Conservatives and the Liberals claim that in Afghanistan, one of the roles is to provide security for development, but most Canadians would be surprised to hear exactly how we are providing that security. The Dahla Dam, Canada's largest development project in Afghanistan, is being entrusted to a private security firm with drug trafficking ties, a firm that the U.S. has blacklisted.

Will the government explain why Canada's precious aid dollars are actually going into the pockets of drug traffickers?

AfghanistanOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Durham Ontario

Conservative

Bev Oda ConservativeMinister of International Cooperation

Mr. Speaker, it is unfortunate that my colleague, a member of Parliament, cannot be proud of the work that Canada and Canadians are doing in Afghanistan. The Dahla Dam is helping those who live in the agricultural area and will provide increased food.

The security of all of our projects is the responsibility of our partners. They must abide by Canadian laws and regulations. We are assured that the protection needed for this work to continue, the protection needed by our humanitarian workers, is going to be provided responsibly.

Employment InsuranceOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Bloc

Yves Lessard Bloc Chambly—Borduas, QC

Mr. Speaker, the Minister of Human Resources and Skills Development is not renewing a pilot project to ease the criteria for employment insurance. She says she would rather offer more training.

By denying young people and workers in unstable job situations access to employment insurance, the minister is denying them training because in order to access Emploi Québec programs, the unemployed must first qualify for employment insurance.

If the minister wants to train more workers, does she realize that she must first ease employment insurance criteria?

Employment InsuranceOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Haldimand—Norfolk Ontario

Conservative

Diane Finley ConservativeMinister of Human Resources and Skills Development

Mr. Speaker, the hon. member is wrong. It is true that we believe the best way to help people is to prepare them for the workforce. That is why we have invested more in training than any other government before us. Under the economic action plan, 1.2 million Canadians have received training.

Employment InsuranceOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Bloc

Josée Beaudin Bloc Saint-Lambert, QC

Mr. Speaker, while the Minister of Human Resources and Skills Development claims to want to train more workers, the Canada summer jobs budget has not been indexed since 2006. If we consider the cost of living increase and the minimum wage increase—$1.75 in Quebec—there is a $26 million shortfall compared to 2006.

Will the minister improve the Canada summer jobs program in order to maintain the number and duration of internships offered to students?

Employment InsuranceOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Haldimand—Norfolk Ontario

Conservative

Diane Finley ConservativeMinister of Human Resources and Skills Development

Mr. Speaker, that is exactly what we did during the past two summers.

Our economic action plan recognized the difficulty students have finding employment. That is why we added $2 million each of the two years to help students and create more than 3,000 additional jobs.

Elections CanadaOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Liberal

Carolyn Bennett Liberal St. Paul's, ON

Mr. Speaker, it appears that the in-and-out scheme was not the only way that the Conservatives cheated in the 2006 election. The Conservative Party used local riding spending allowances on regional campaign offices that worked almost exclusively on the national campaign. This cheating allowed it to spend over $100,000 more than the rules allowed.

Can the minister responsible confirm that Elections Canada has launched an investigation into two of the Conservative Party's regional campaign offices?

The Conservatives do not like that very much, do they?

Elections CanadaOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Nepean—Carleton Ontario

Conservative

Pierre Poilievre ConservativeParliamentary Secretary to the Prime Minister and to the Minister of Intergovernmental Affairs

Mr. Speaker, may I begin, on behalf of the government of Canada, by commending the member for her extraordinary passion in this House. We disagree, however, with Elections Canada on this matter.

In unrelated matters, it is important to note that Elections Canada has been wrong in its classification of expenses. In fact, two courts have already ruled against Elections Canada and in favour of the Conservative Party.

Elections CanadaOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Liberal

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

Mr. Speaker, Canadians have the right to know whether political parties cheat during elections by fraudulently circumventing spending limits established by law. According to the chief electoral officer, that is precisely what the Conservative Party regional offices were being used for.

Is the minister responsible waiting for another RCMP search of Conservative Party offices before requiring his government and his party to stop cheating? Is that what he is waiting for?

Elections CanadaOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Nepean—Carleton Ontario

Conservative

Pierre Poilievre ConservativeParliamentary Secretary to the Prime Minister and to the Minister of Intergovernmental Affairs

Mr. Speaker, the member did not hear my last answer because I already pointed out that we disagree with Elections Canada on this matter and that, in unrelated matters, it is worth noting that Elections Canada has been wrong in its classification of expenses. In fact, two courts have ruled against Elections Canada and in favour of the Conservative Party.

National DefenceOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

NDP

Jack Harris NDP St. John's East, NL

Mr. Speaker, the F-35 fiasco continues to grow. The choice for this jet was made without competition behind closed doors.

The minister has said that F-35 maintenance over 20 years will cost $5 billion. His parliamentary secretary has said $7 billion. However, in 2009, DND told industry that the cost would be $12 billion. Meanwhile, a competitor, Saab, told the defence committee that its maintenance costs would total $1 billion over 20 years but it did not even get a chance to bid. That is a big difference.

When will the government come clean, show us its math and stop pulling numbers out of thin air?

National DefenceOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Central Nova Nova Scotia

Conservative

Peter MacKay ConservativeMinister of National Defence

Mr. Speaker, the member is wrong on all fronts. We have said all along that we expect the cost of sustaining the F-35 will be in the same order of magnitude as the current fleet when we factor in the 2016 dollars. This will be in keeping with the projections that we have maintained all along. A 20 year contract would mean somewhere between $5 billion and $6 billion.

Members should keep in mind that as more countries decide to purchase the F-35, which they may very well, this will bring the price down for Canada. It is a win-win situation for the Canadian Forces. It is a win for the aerospace industry. I wish members opposite would support the Canadian Forces in this important purchase.

National DefenceOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

NDP

Jack Harris NDP St. John's East, NL

Mr. Speaker, Canadians are sick of the Conservative government playing fast and loose with numbers.

Wild claims about 16,000 jobs simply do not add up. An industry witness told the defence committee last week that the number of jobs created, even if $12 billion in work were obtained, would only be about 1,800 jobs, and even those would not all be new jobs. It is time for the Conservative government to stop its cynical approach designed to mislead the public.

When will the minister stop the fairytales and start telling Canadians the truth about the fighter jet purchase?

National DefenceOral Questions

2:55 p.m.

Central Nova Nova Scotia

Conservative

Peter MacKay ConservativeMinister of National Defence

Mr. Speaker, let us put aside the partisan rant for a moment.

Claude Lajeunesse of the Aerospace Industries Association of Canada said that this was a contract that would give the Canadian aerospace industry the ability to bid on aircraft, up to 3,000 to 5,000. He referenced the $12 billion in opportunities. It was the association itself that referenced the 150,000 direct and indirect jobs that this contract would generate.

The hon. member should take his radio off broadcast and put it on receive.

Aerospace IndustryOral Questions

2:55 p.m.

Conservative

Terence Young Conservative Oakville, ON

Mr. Speaker, today, the Minister of Industry joined the member for Mississauga—Erindale in announcing a $300 million investment into a $1 billion project by Pratt & Whitney to develop lighter aircraft engines with more power, better fuel consumption and improved durability.

Would the Minister of Industry please explain to the House how the government's continued commitment to research and development is keeping Canada at the forefront of the international aerospace industry?

Aerospace IndustryOral Questions

2:55 p.m.

Parry Sound—Muskoka Ontario

Conservative

Tony Clement ConservativeMinister of Industry

The hon. member is quite correct, Mr. Speaker. That is exactly what I and the member for Mississauga—Erindale did earlier today. We announced a major investment by the Government of Canada through a repayable contribution but also by the industry itself, a $1 billion R and D investment in the aerospace sector. That translates into 700 jobs for research and development and over 2,000 jobs when it comes to the actual production phase.

We are in favour of research and development, whether it comes to F-35s or whether it comes to the aerospace industry. We are onside with the aerospace sector. When will the Liberals do the same?

Railway ServiceOral Questions

2:55 p.m.

Liberal

John McCallum Liberal Markham—Unionville, ON

Mr. Speaker, the government's own review panel found that the central cause of inadequate railway service is excessive railway market power. No one in farming, forestry or mining thinks that this power will magically disappear in the coming years.

Instead of waiting three valuable years, why will the government not immediately legislate to counteract excessive railway market power and ensure shippers receive the rail service that they need and deserve?

Railway ServiceOral Questions

2:55 p.m.

Yellowhead Alberta

Conservative

Rob Merrifield ConservativeMinister of State (Transport)

Mr. Speaker, farmers and shippers across this country waited 13 years for the Liberal government to do absolutely nothing for them. We struck a panel and the Liberals should at least wait for that panel to come out with its recommendations before criticizing. We will wait for those recommendations and we will make the best decision in the interests of Canada when it comes to where we go from here.

Highway InfrastructureOral Questions

2:55 p.m.

Bloc

Robert Bouchard Bloc Chicoutimi—Le Fjord, QC

Mr. Speaker, the federal government reneged on an agreement it made with the Government of Quebec by refusing to share up to 50% of the cost of widening Highway 175. This refusal to pay represents a double windfall for the federal government. Not only is the federal government paying only one-third of the bill but it will also collect taxes on the third phase of work on Highway 175.

Is the minister going to stop being so stubborn and negotiate a new agreement with the Government of Quebec to fully share the cost overruns of Highway 175?

Highway InfrastructureOral Questions

2:55 p.m.

Fort McMurray—Athabasca Alberta

Conservative

Brian Jean ConservativeParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Transport

Mr. Speaker, let us be clear. We have come to an agreement with the Quebec government, just like we have come to agreements with all the provincial governments across our great country.

If it were up to the Bloc, there would be no new arenas, no Canada's economic action plan, no highways and no contribution agreement on Highway 175 because the Bloc voted against all of that. The Bloc continues to oppose every good investment this country needs from this Conservative government.