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House of Commons Hansard #32 of the 41st Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was producers.

Topics

TransportOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Roberval—Lac-Saint-Jean Québec

Conservative

Denis Lebel ConservativeMinister of Transport

Mr. Speaker, we received the report and are reviewing it. This report was funded by three partners: the Government of Quebec, the Government of Ontario and the Government of Canada. And, as is appropriate, we will wait for the Province of Ontario to appoint its next transportation minister. We will speak with these people and a decision will be made public.

TransportOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

NDP

Brian Masse NDP Windsor West, ON

Mr. Speaker, that is a very slow read. This leaked report is suggesting that we abandon passenger rail in southern Ontario and ignore its connections with the U.S. High-speed rail from Quebec City to Windsor and on to Chicago should be a priority. The United States is moving forward, investing hundreds of millions of dollars, while Canada just studies the issue. Even Uzbekistan is rolling right past us, building high-speed rail.

Will the minister create a stakeholder working group today to ensure that high-speed rail from Windsor to Quebec City happens and we connect into Chicago? Will the minister act and bring the stakeholders in and see some action for a change?

TransportOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Roberval—Lac-Saint-Jean Québec

Conservative

Denis Lebel ConservativeMinister of Transport

Mr. Speaker, that MP already knows I will work hard for a new bridge between Windsor and Detroit. He knows it is long. We have a lot of démarche to do and we have a lot of work with the U.S.A. and now we want to be getting something for Chicago. How many years does the member think it will take?

For now, the study has been received by the government. We will study it and then the province of Ontario will name its new minister of transport and we will discuss it with him or her.

Canada-U.S. RelationsOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Liberal

Wayne Easter Liberal Malpeque, PE

Mr. Speaker, yesterday, the U.S. ambassador basically told the Minister of International Trade that it was lovely having a chat but that the United States will maintain its protectionist stance denying Canadian participation in stimulus.

Now, on this very day, the government is selling out farmers' marketing rights to United States interests. After winning 14 challenges with the U.S., now the Prime Minister serves up the Canadian Wheat Board on a silver platter.

Why is the Minister of International Trade consistently allowing a sellout to U.S. interests?

Canada-U.S. RelationsOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Abbotsford B.C.

Conservative

Ed Fast ConservativeMinister of International Trade and Minister for the Asia-Pacific Gateway

Mr. Speaker, we have made it very clear, time and time again, that we are focused on building Canada's economy and on creating jobs.

I was in the United States yesterday and the day before meeting with my counterpart and meeting with key decision-makers in the United States making it very clear that barriers to trade hurt both of our countries. We will continue to stand up for hard-working Canadians. Why will the Liberals not?

Canada-U.S. RelationsOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Liberal

Joyce Murray Liberal Vancouver Quadra, BC

Mr. Speaker, for weeks U.S. legislators have mused about putting a new tax on U.S.-bound cargo transported through Canadian ports. Instead of confronting this job killing threat head on, the Conservative minister has essentially said, “Don't worry, be happy”.

Well he should worry and he should act. The U.S. government is formally considering this unfair new tariff.

Why is the Conservative government abandoning Canadian businesses and ports? Why is it refusing to fight this next protectionist attack on Canadian jobs?

Canada-U.S. RelationsOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Abbotsford B.C.

Conservative

Ed Fast ConservativeMinister of International Trade and Minister for the Asia-Pacific Gateway

Mr. Speaker, I do not accept the premise of that question. As I have repeatedly said, any new tax, any new barrier at the border raises consumer costs--

Canada-U.S. RelationsOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Some hon. members

Oh, oh!

Canada-U.S. RelationsOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Conservative

The Speaker Conservative Andrew Scheer

Order, please. The Minister of International Trade has the floor.

Canada-U.S. RelationsOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Conservative

Ed Fast Conservative Abbotsford, BC

Mr. Speaker, we welcome the U.S. ambassador's, David Jacobson, assurances that no new taxes on cargo entering the United States from Canada will be forthcoming. We also share his view that the Canada-U.S. trading relationship is the very best on earth.

We will defend Canada's competitive advantages, especially with respect to its ports. I have made this clear to the FMC Commissioner Lidinsky and my U.S. counterpart, Ambassador Kirk.

Canada's ports and railways are competing fairly and the Asia-Pacific gateway initiative is working--

Canada-U.S. RelationsOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Conservative

The Speaker Conservative Andrew Scheer

The hon. member for Kings—Hants.

Canada-U.S. RelationsOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Liberal

Scott Brison Liberal Kings—Hants, NS

Mr. Speaker, when Conservatives negotiated their perimeter deal with the U.S., what exactly did Canada get in return?

There was no amnesty for Canada-U.S. dual citizens who are facing U.S. fines on their Canadian savings. There are no privacy measures to stop the U.S. from forcing Canadian banks to disclose personal information on Canadians. There is nothing for Canadian workers who stand to lose their jobs facing U.S. protectionism and buy American provisions.

Why will the Conservatives not stand up for Canada when they are negotiating with America?

Canada-U.S. RelationsOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Whitby—Oshawa Ontario

Conservative

Jim Flaherty ConservativeMinister of Finance

Mr. Speaker, FACTA has far reaching implications as it would require Canadian banks to collect a great deal of information and at a very substantial expense. I have reviewed this with all of our Canadian banks. I have also raised it with the secretary of the treasury and my officials continue to discuss it with them. We are hopeful that we will be able to arrive at an arrangement with the Americans that would not require this needless expense.

Human RightsOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

NDP

Randall Garrison NDP Esquimalt—Juan de Fuca, BC

Mr. Speaker, the Commonwealth Eminent Persons Group has called on member states to address human rights directly and make it a priority at their upcoming meetings in Perth.

In 41 of 54 Commonwealth states being gay is still illegal, meaning people who are otherwise law-abiding could be arrested and prosecuted just for being gay.

Would the Minister of Foreign Affairs commit to using Canada's prominent role in the Commonwealth to ensure that lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender rights are a high priority at the Commonwealth heads of government meeting next week in Perth?

Human RightsOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Ottawa West—Nepean Ontario

Conservative

John Baird ConservativeMinister of Foreign Affairs

Mr. Speaker, Canada will be taking a very active role in Perth to ensure the issue of human rights is front and centre. There are substantial proposals that will be before Commonwealth leaders, including issues with respect to human rights, a Commonwealth charter, more democracy and more freedom. That certainly includes the rights of gays and lesbians.

The member opposite and the House can be assured that Canada will continue to push human rights at the Commonwealth summit.

Human RightsOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

NDP

Dany Morin NDP Chicoutimi—Le Fjord, QC

Mr. Speaker, The Commonwealth Eminent Persons Group is calling on member states to support the decriminalization of homosexuality. This is a fundamental human rights issue and an important step in the fight against the spread of HIV-AIDS.

Will the Minister of Foreign Affairs commit to using Canada's diplomatic influence to put an end to the criminalization of homosexuality around the world? This is 2011—it is about time.

Human RightsOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Ottawa West—Nepean Ontario

Conservative

John Baird ConservativeMinister of Foreign Affairs

Mr. Speaker, absolutely. At the last Commonwealth summit, the Prime Minister was able to bring the objections of all members of this House to the government of Uganda for an outrageous bill that was before its parliament.

At the Commonwealth summit in Perth, we will continue to fight for human rights to ensure that Canadian values are promoted and advanced at these international summits, and that certainly includes the rights of gays and lesbians.

Citizenship and ImmigrationOral Questions

October 19th, 2011 / 2:45 p.m.

NDP

Marjolaine Boutin-Sweet NDP Hochelaga, QC

Mr. Speaker, if the Minister of Citizenship, Immigration and Multiculturalism does not intervene by tomorrow, two young homosexual men, David Perez and Pablo Gonzalez, will be deported to Mexico. The two fear for their safety if they return to Mexico, but the Canada Border Services Agency has refused to delay their removal pending an appeal on humanitarian grounds.

Will the minister intervene and stop this forced removal until the appeal is heard?

Citizenship and ImmigrationOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Calgary Southeast Alberta

Conservative

Jason Kenney ConservativeMinister of Citizenship

Mr. Speaker, we have a very fair asylum system, but it is a legal system, not a political system. It is up to the courts, to the quasi-judicial bodies such as the Immigration and Refugee Board, and to the Federal Court, to decide whether or not people are refugees who need Canada's protection. It is totally inappropriate for members of Parliament or even ministers to reverse the legal decisions of our just legal system.

Citizenship and ImmigrationOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

NDP

Marjolaine Boutin-Sweet NDP Hochelaga, QC

Mr. Speaker, we know that when they return to Mexico, these two men and their family members will again be subjected to threats, violence and persecution.

Before coming to Canada, they were attacked many times by the authorities that should have been protecting them. Mr. Perez and Mr. Gonzalez have legitimate reasons to fear for their lives if they leave Canada.

What steps is this government taking to ensure that violence against these men and other members of Mexico's homosexual community is taken seriously?

Citizenship and ImmigrationOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Calgary Southeast Alberta

Conservative

Jason Kenney ConservativeMinister of Citizenship

Mr. Speaker, this Parliament created the Immigration and Refugee Board to examine asylum claims on the basis of evidence and the criteria permitted by our laws. It is up to the board to decide if a person is being persecuted or if the personal safety of that person is threatened. It is up to the Federal Court to review those decisions. There is even a pre-removal risk assessment. If the appeal is denied, another appeal to the Federal Court is possible. That means that we have a fair and just system for all asylum seekers.

Small BusinessOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Conservative

Costas Menegakis Conservative Richmond Hill, ON

Mr. Speaker, this week is dedicated to small and medium-sized businesses that create wealth and jobs throughout Canada. They play a vital role in our economy.

Can the minister responsible for small business and tourism tell the House what measures have been taken to support these businesses?

Small BusinessOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Beauce Québec

Conservative

Maxime Bernier ConservativeMinister of State (Small Business and Tourism)

Mr. Speaker, I would be pleased to tell the House what this government is doing for small and medium-sized businesses. We have cut their tax rate to 11%. We have created the Red Tape Reduction Commission. We know that time is money for small businesses and they need to spend less time filling out government paperwork and more time doing what they do best—creating jobs in Canada. We support entrepreneurs and we are proud of them.

G8 SummitOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

NDP

Charlie Angus NDP Timmins—James Bay, ON

Mr. Speaker, yesterday, after 131 days of dodging accountability, the Muskoka minister finally peered up over his desk. He made a quick little joke and he went back into hibernation. However, he did not say “sorry”. He did not explain why he ran a slush fund from his office. He did not explain why the paper trail was hidden from the Auditor General. The Auditor General said that the rules were broken and Parliament must investigate.

Will the minister do the right thing? Will he come out of hibernation, stand in this House, and commit to a full parliamentary investigation of his role in the G8 slush fund?

G8 SummitOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Ottawa West—Nepean Ontario

Conservative

John Baird ConservativeMinister of Foreign Affairs

Mr. Speaker, it will not come as any surprise to my friend from northern Ontario that I do not agree with the premise of his question.

The Auditor General has thoroughly looked into this issue. She has come out with a strong report. This government has fully accepted the report and fully accepted all the recommendations that she has represented.

I know the President of the Treasury Board is just as excited as I am to be able to appear before the public accounts committee. We look forward to that opportunity in very short order.