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House of Commons Hansard #43 of the 40th Parliament, 3rd Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was pumps.

Topics

Liberation of the NetherlandsStatements By Members

2 p.m.

Conservative

Rod Bruinooge Conservative Winnipeg South, MB

Mr. Speaker, Canadian veterans travelled to the Netherlands last week to commemorate their role in the country's liberation during the second world war. Our veterans were treated like royalty and honoured by Dutch citizens, both young and old.

It is clear to see that the Dutch do not take their freedom for granted. Even after 65 years, they continue to honour the memory of the thousands who lost their lives fighting oppression. They continue to celebrate the veterans who are still alive today.

I can certainly understand their appreciation. My father and his family were in Holland during World War II. My father used to tell me stories of when Canadians liberated him and his family and their country. There were celebrations in the streets, just like there were last week.

I look forward to Princess Margriet's official visit to Canada tomorrow, which will highlight the historic ties and the continued co-operation between our two countries.

As the years go by and the war moves further into our past, we must never grow indifferent to the cost of freedom.

Liberation of the NetherlandsStatements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Liberal

Lawrence MacAulay Liberal Cardigan, PE

Mr. Speaker, it is with great pride that I rise in the House today to recognize Mrs. Annie VanDenBroek of Cardigan.

Five years ago, Annie published a book called When the Green Letter Comes Over. Annie's book is a diary of the war years seen through the eyes of a teenage girl growing up in Holland. She was a girl with a vivid imagination and with her incredible memory, she spent five years writing the book.

Annie immigrated to Canada and lives in Cardigan with her husband, Martin, where they raised 10 children. She has been a pillar in the community and in her church. One of the stories from her book was published in de Krant, a North American magazine for Dutch citizens. Last week Mrs. VanDenBroek was acknowledged by the Department of Veterans Affairs during the 65th anniversary celebrations of the liberation of Holland for donating one of her books.

On behalf of all members in this House of Commons, it is my privilege to congratulate Mrs. Annie VanDenBroek.

Tribute to Member's FamilyStatements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Conservative

Jim Abbott Conservative Kootenay—Columbia, BC

Mr. Speaker, I stand today to pay tribute to my family.

In 1992 when I approached my wife and children with the crazy idea of running as a member of Parliament, they supported me. We tried to understand what we were getting into and did the best research we could, but honestly, we did not appreciate the total all-consuming nature of the job.

Recognition, familiarity and approachability with voters are traits and characteristics after which every MP strives. However, that approachability means that being an MP is not just a job, it is a 24/7 life. Birthday celebrations, family picnics or camping, even graduation events regrettably could end up in conflict with constituency events. This is particularly true in a large geographic area like Kootenay--Columbia.

In 18 years, my immediate family has grown from 5 special people to 14, including 7 wonderful grandchildren. They have always been supportive. I could not have gotten the job done without them. They are all in Ottawa with me today. I say to them, and especially my wife, thank you, I love you.

Employment InsuranceStatements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Bloc

Robert Bouchard Bloc Chicoutimi—Le Fjord, QC

Mr. Speaker, the Saguenay—Lac-Saint-Jean Saint Vincent de Paul Society held its annual general meeting at the end of April. Almost 120 participants gathered to discuss the problems associated with poverty in our region.

There was a clear consensus. Poverty is still well entrenched and the ongoing forestry crisis continues to claim victims among workers. The participants passed a resolution asking the federal government to speed up the process and shorten the period that the unemployed must wait for their benefits. For seasonal workers, this interminable period can sometimes last up to six weeks because of administrative delays.

As a partial solution to this problem, the Bloc Québécois introduced Bill C-241, which would abolish the unfair two-week waiting period that the Conservative government continues to support.

The EconomyStatements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Conservative

Colin Carrie Conservative Oshawa, ON

Mr. Speaker, the only time a Liberal talks about the economy is to tell Canadians that Liberals like higher taxes.

First, the Liberal leader thinks the best thing for the economy is a GST hike. Besides hurting the pocketbooks of ordinary Canadians, the Liberal GST hike would kill 160,000 jobs. Second, the Liberals want to impose a new carbon tax on everything. And now, regrettably, the Liberals want to increase job-killing business taxes.

On the other hand, our Conservative government is implementing Canada's economic action plan and lowering taxes on families. Our plan is working. Since July 2009, employment in Canada has increased by 285,000 jobs. In April alone, we saw over 108,000 jobs created.

Canadians now have more than 108,000 reasons to say no to Liberal tax hikes and yes to Canada's economic action plan.

Rural Broadband PolicyStatements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Liberal

Scott Andrews Liberal Avalon, NL

Mr. Speaker, the member for Battlefords—Lloydminster stood in this House last week and criticized the fact that we announced a national rural broadband mobile phone policy in southern Ontario, claiming that there were no rural communities there. The problem is, however, that it took place on a family farm in King, Ontario, in the riding of the member for York—Simcoe.

We all know from the state of our federal finances that the Conservatives do not excel at math, and now we know that their geography is not much better. What is more ironic is that over the weekend, the Conservatives announced their rural policy from a specialty coffee shop in the heart of Mississauga, one of the largest urban centres in Canada.

These cappuccino Conservatives are out of touch with ordinary Canadians. The Minister of Industry would not bother to set down is venti non-fat chai latte to travel out to the country and discuss the policy with real rural Canadians.

The hypocrisy is typical of this tired Conservative government. Up is down, rural is urban and right is wrong. When will the Conservatives put down their non-fat, extra foam, organic green tea lattes and stand up for ordinary hard-working rural Canadians?

Broadband Canada ProgramStatements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Conservative

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

Mr. Speaker, yesterday, our government announced a series of projects to receive conditional funding approval under the Broadband Canada: Connecting Rural Canadians program. These 52 projects, in nine provinces and territories across Canada, will bring broadband Internet access to an estimated 169,000 households.

As a result of this announcement, many individuals, families and businesses across Canada will soon have access to high-speed Internet service for the first time and therefore access to important economic and social benefits.

These measures will encourage economic development, spur innovation and improve the quality of life in hundreds of communities from coast to coast to coast.

The projects announced were selected in order to include as many households as possible that are currently unserved or underserved.

This announcement is just the beginning. Other announcements will follow until all available funds have been allocated.

Cyclotron NetworkStatements By Members

2:10 p.m.

NDP

Bruce Hyer NDP Thunder Bay—Superior North, ON

Mr. Speaker, almost a year ago, the Chalk River reactor was shut down, cutting off almost half of the world's supply of medical isotopes. In Canada, vital procedures are still being delayed or cancelled. Reactor repair costs are running at $11 million per month.

Right now all of our isotope eggs are in one basket. There is a better way: a national network of much less expensive cyclotrons to produce isotopes at regional health centres across Canada. This would mean a cost-effective and safer end to catastrophic shortages like the current one.

One such cyclotron is planned for Thunder Bay. The Thunder Bay Regional Research Institute has gotten funding from the province toward a cyclotron and radiopharmacy facility, but it has been left waiting for the federal government to step up with its share. It is time for the federal government to show leadership and fund this vital initiative.

Broadband InternetStatements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Conservative

James Bezan Conservative Selkirk—Interlake, MB

Mr. Speaker, broadband Internet has never been more important to the social and economic success of a country. Last week the Liberal leader drudged up an old Liberal red book promise for broadband that the Liberals broke 10 years ago.

On the other hand, this government is taking real action. On Sunday we announced the first series of 52 projects under the broadband Canada connecting rural Canadians program. These projects in nine provinces and territories will bring broadband Internet access to over 168,000 households. These households across Canada will soon have access to the economic and social benefits of high-speed Internet service for the very first time.

Thanks to this government, Canada is poised to make great strides in the digital economy of the 21st century. The difference between Liberal broken promises and Conservative action has never been more clear.

Canadian FederalismStatements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Bloc

Michel Guimond Bloc Montmorency—Charlevoix—Haute-Côte-Nord, QC

Mr. Speaker, 20 years ago, Canada killed the Meech Lake accord, rejecting Quebec's minimum demands. Today, it is clear that Canada has no desire to accommodate Quebec. The possibility of reforming Canadian federalism so that it satisfies the aspirations of the Quebec nation is nothing but an illusion.

The recognition of the Quebec nation by the Conservatives was just symbolic, and Canadians did not want it to have any real effect. There are no new constitutional talks, no special status, and no additional resources or powers for Quebec.

Since we are getting nowhere with reforming federalism, the other option is Quebec sovereignty. This is the only way that Quebeckers can control their own destiny, can ensure the predominance and survival of their language and culture, can control immigration and can define their citizenship. As a sovereign nation, we will finally be able to speak for ourselves on the world stage. Let us put an end to this charade and choose the path to freedom: sovereignty for Quebec.

EthicsStatements By Members

2:15 p.m.

Liberal

Alexandra Mendes Liberal Brossard—La Prairie, QC

Mr. Speaker, over a month ago now, the Prime Minister informed Canadians that he had tossed the Status of Women minister out of cabinet and the Conservative caucus. He also asked the RCMP and the Ethics Commissioner to investigate. A month on, Canadians still do not know why.

A lot has happened since then, but we still do not know the nature of these allegations, deemed so serious that the Prime Minister needed to call in the RCMP on a sitting cabinet minister for the first time since the days of Brian Mulroney.

It was not enough that the minister violated security regulations in an airport or treated airport employees poorly. It was not enough that members of her staff passed themselves off as members of the public and wrote letters in support of her or that her husband was conducting personal business in her office.

All this time, the Prime Minister kept telling us that she did very good work.

Then overnight, he called in the RCMP. These are questions that have to do with the integrity of the government. It is time to end the culture of deceit. When will the government come clean with Canadians?

Firearms RegistryStatements By Members

2:15 p.m.

Conservative

Gerald Keddy Conservative South Shore—St. Margaret's, NS

Mr. Speaker, another day and another serious gaffe for the Liberal leader and his team.

Last week, it was revealed that the Liberal leader used a photo of an American police officer to promote forcing his MPs to support the wasteful and ineffective long gun registry. Even worse, the Liberals falsely Photoshopped the badge of the Ottawa Police Service on to the shoulder of that American police officer to make it look as if Canadian police officers support his initiative.

Not only did this show that a culture of deceit exists within the Liberal Party but it also broke the law. Ontario's Police Services Act and regulations prohibit municipal police officers from engaging in political activity while in uniform. The Liberal leader had to falsely place the badge of the Ottawa Police Service because no police officer would break the law in the way the Liberals suggest.

It is shameful for the Liberal Party to use our police in this way. This is not just a matter of law. It is a matter of trust.

The EconomyOral Questions

2:15 p.m.

Etobicoke—Lakeshore Ontario

Liberal

Michael Ignatieff LiberalLeader of the Opposition

Mr. Speaker, in the 1990s, the Liberal government balanced the budget, paid down part of the debt and regulated the banks.

The Prime Minister and his party opposed every step. He boasts about Canada's strong performance today, but he had nothing to do with it.

Will the Prime Minister learn from the European crisis and freeze the corporate tax cuts that could jeopardize Canada's strong fiscal position?

The EconomyOral Questions

2:15 p.m.

Ottawa West—Nepean Ontario

Conservative

John Baird ConservativeMinister of Transport

Mr. Speaker, if the leader of the Liberal Party wants to talk about where the Minister of Finance was during the 1990s, we could have that conversation as to where the leader of the Liberal Party was in the 1990s.

The leader of the official opposition was not in the country, but in the 1990s we also saw Shawinigate and the sponsorship scandal, and Canadians are still looking for the $39 million that is still missing. Maybe the leader of the Liberal Party could help us with that.

The EconomyOral Questions

2:15 p.m.

Etobicoke—Lakeshore Ontario

Liberal

Michael Ignatieff LiberalLeader of the Opposition

Mr. Speaker, let us try again. When the Liberals regulated the banks, the Prime Minister opposed it. When we introduced fiscal prudence into the budget, he opposed it. When we paid down the debt, he opposed it. The Prime Minister and the Conservative Party opposed every step the Liberal Party took to get our house in order in the 1990s. Will they now learn the lesson of the sovereign debt crisis, freeze corporate tax rates and put fiscal prudence back in the picture?

The EconomyOral Questions

2:15 p.m.

Ottawa West—Nepean Ontario

Conservative

John Baird ConservativeMinister of Transport

Mr. Speaker, I know where I was in the 1990s. I was at Queen's Park listening to speeches by the member for Toronto Centre, talking about the devastating effect that the Liberals' $25 billion cuts to health care made. If the member opposite does not want to believe me, he should listen to the member for Markham—Unionville. “I think...the Chrétien government—even though I am a Liberal—cut perhaps too deeply, too much offloading, with the benefit of hindsight. And there were some negative effects...”. I agree with him.

The EconomyOral Questions

2:20 p.m.

Etobicoke—Lakeshore Ontario

Liberal

Michael Ignatieff LiberalLeader of the Opposition

Mr. Speaker, the issue here is that the government is surfing on a reputation it did not earn and opposed at the time. The Prime Minister praises the bank regulations that have kept the banking system safe, but he opposed them every step of the way, and in 2002 he wanted to open our banking system to exactly the factors that destroyed banks everywhere. Thank goodness he was not prime minister. Why is he making the same ideological mistake now, rushing into corporate tax cuts the country cannot afford?

The EconomyOral Questions

2:20 p.m.

Ottawa West—Nepean Ontario

Conservative

John Baird ConservativeMinister of Transport

Mr. Speaker, let me say this. These tax cuts that our government has brought in, championed by the member's own Liberal critic, have helped create thousands of jobs. Just last month we saw the Canadian economy create 108,000 new jobs. That is not just a number; 108,000 people got a phone call and the voice on the other end of the phone said, “You got the job”. We are going to be committed to job creation, committed to economic growth, committed to making Canada the best place to work, live, invest and raise a family.

The EnvironmentOral Questions

May 10th, 2010 / 2:20 p.m.

Liberal

David McGuinty Liberal Ottawa South, ON

Mr. Speaker, two years ago the Conservatives decided to expedite the approval of exploration permits for BP and Imperial Oil in the Beaufort Sea. They did so without establishing an integrated management plan for the region, knowing very well that the permits were for fragile areas that would be impossible to clean in the event of a spill, because of the frozen waters, for one thing.

Why is the Prime Minister deliberately endangering the fragile environment of the Canadian Arctic, when we know that the risks involved are enormous?

The EnvironmentOral Questions

2:20 p.m.

Mégantic—L'Érable Québec

Conservative

Christian Paradis ConservativeMinister of Natural Resources

Mr. Speaker, these allegations are completely false. The government has been clear from the beginning. We expect Canadian authorities to apply Canada's strict environmental standards, including our strict safety regime for offshore drilling.

I want to be very clear here. We will not proceed in any way if we are not absolutely certain that the environment and the safety of our workers will be respected, period. And Canadians can expect nothing less.

The EnvironmentOral Questions

2:20 p.m.

Liberal

David McGuinty Liberal Ottawa South, ON

Mr. Speaker, BP gave assurances that it could handle a disaster 30 times larger than the spill in the Gulf of Mexico.

A virtually identical rig and drilling system is set to be used off the coast of Newfoundland. If a spill were to occur, it would take 11 days just to get a ship to the site, with no guarantees a suitable rig could be found to drill a relief well.

The government claims it has standards that are more stringent than in the United States. If that is the case, why is the only emergency preparedness plan in place provided by Chevron? Where is the government's plan?

The EnvironmentOral Questions

2:20 p.m.

Mégantic—L'Érable Québec

Conservative

Christian Paradis ConservativeMinister of Natural Resources

Mr. Speaker, I heard a lot of “ifs” in the question.

Canadian regulations require operators to employ the best technology, equipment and training techniques available. We will not accept any weakening of those requirements.

Let me be clear. No drilling will proceed unless we are convinced of the safety of the environment and the workers, period. Canadians expect nothing less.

SecuritiesOral Questions

2:20 p.m.

Bloc

Gilles Duceppe Bloc Laurier—Sainte-Marie, QC

Mr. Speaker, the federal government wants to interfere in Quebec's jurisdiction by imposing a Canada-wide securities commission, a decision that, according to a study by SECOR Group, would be harmful to Quebec, its financial institutions, its businesses and its jobs.

In light of such negative findings, how can the Conservative government, which claims to respect jurisdictions, be so stubborn as to propose a Canada-wide securities commission that would go against the economic and financial interests of Quebec?

SecuritiesOral Questions

2:20 p.m.

Mégantic—L'Érable Québec

Conservative

Christian Paradis ConservativeMinister of Natural Resources

Mr. Speaker, we have been clear from the start. This is voluntary. The majority of the provinces want to work with a single commission, but it is on a voluntary basis. What is more, to ensure that we are acting well within our jurisdiction, we are referring everything to the Supreme Court to be sure that this initiative is legitimate. Nonetheless, I want to be clear: this is voluntary. Furthermore, the OECD and the International Monetary Fund commend this initiative.

SecuritiesOral Questions

2:20 p.m.

Bloc

Gilles Duceppe Bloc Laurier—Sainte-Marie, QC

Mr. Speaker, the SECOR Group study is clear. With a Canada-wide commission, Quebec authorities would lose the decision-making power and influence that Montreal and the entire Quebec economy benefit from.

How can the Conservative MPs and ministers from Quebec support such a transfer of financial power from Montreal to Toronto and such a violation of the powers attributed exclusively to Quebec?