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House of Commons Hansard #25 of the 41st Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was senators.

Topics

Canada-U.S. RelationsOral Questions

2:25 p.m.

Ottawa West—Nepean Ontario

Conservative

John Baird ConservativeMinister of Foreign Affairs

Mr. Speaker, it was not so long ago that members opposite were fighting greater trade opportunities south of the border with the United States with NAFTA and now they have come to embrace trade. We are working very closely with the Obama administration to try to make our economies more competitive. There are some proposals out there with which we take great issue and we will continue to fight for Canadian interests every day of the week. We believe in de-thickening the border as the best way to ensure future prosperity for people on both sides of the border.

Judicial IndependenceOral Questions

October 3rd, 2011 / 2:25 p.m.

Liberal

Bob Rae Liberal Toronto Centre, ON

Mr. Speaker, a House committee that is dominated by the Conservatives made the extraordinary decision to call a judge before a parliamentary committee.

I have a question for the Minister of Justice. How can the minister explain this total lack of respect for judicial independence and the separation of powers?

Judicial IndependenceOral Questions

2:25 p.m.

Peterborough Ontario

Conservative

Dean Del Mastro ConservativeParliamentary Secretary to the Prime Minister and to the Minister of Intergovernmental Affairs

Mr. Speaker, the Standing Committee on Access to Information, Privacy and Ethics did invite a justice to appear before the committee, but let us be clear. We are going to introduce the judge's ruling as evidence before that committee and I hope that all members will review the good work that has been done by the justice in this regard. In fact, we will continue to push forward with inviting Canadians to come before our committee.

The EconomyOral Questions

2:25 p.m.

NDP

Thomas Mulcair NDP Outremont, QC

Mr. Speaker, this is the third week of the fall session and this government, which claims that the economy and job creation are its main priority, has yet to accomplish anything. Not one thing. There has been no economic initiative, no real initiative. However, the government plans to reduce corporate taxes again on December 31.

Does the government really believe that $22 billion, including $11 billion in bonuses for executives, is not enough for the chartered banks?

The EconomyOral Questions

2:25 p.m.

Saint Boniface Manitoba

Conservative

Shelly Glover ConservativeParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Finance

Mr. Speaker, as I said before, we have taken a number of steps to adjust corporate and personal taxes throughout the country. Canada has weathered the global economic upheaval better than other countries as a result of its plan to reduce the tax burden. Since forming the government in 2006, we have put an average of $3,000 in the pockets of Canadian families. We also leave more money in the hands of entrepreneurs and businesses so they can grow and employ more Canadians. Our plan is working.

The EconomyOral Questions

2:25 p.m.

NDP

Thomas Mulcair NDP Outremont, QC

Mr. Speaker, at this time the Conservatives are saddling future generations with the biggest environmental, economic and social debt in our history. Since coming to power, they have gutted the manufacturing sector and destabilized our previously balanced economy, which Canada has built up since the second world war. There is a great void—except for tax reductions for the banks that make $22 billion profits.

When will they invest in good quality jobs for young people, who will have to foot the bill?

The EconomyOral Questions

2:25 p.m.

Mégantic—L'Érable Québec

Conservative

Christian Paradis ConservativeMinister of Industry and Minister of State (Agriculture)

Mr. Speaker, let us stick to the facts. Our low tax plan has resulted in the creation of 600,000 net new jobs since 2009. Canada's economic leadership is recognized internationally. What we do know is that the NDP is pushing a plan that would increase our tax burden by $10 billion a year. We know that it would kill the economy and that is definitely not the direction that this government will take.

EmploymentOral Questions

2:30 p.m.

NDP

Libby Davies NDP Vancouver East, BC

Mr. Speaker, in the last federal election New Democrats put forward a solid proposal to support small businesses, the real job creators in our economy. This plan applied to all employers and gave them room to hire and retain more staff. The government could have enacted it immediately, thus supporting Canadian businesses and staving off rising unemployment numbers.

Why does the government prefer to blow billions on corporate tax cuts with no guarantee a single job will be created?

EmploymentOral Questions

2:30 p.m.

Saint Boniface Manitoba

Conservative

Shelly Glover ConservativeParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Finance

Mr. Speaker, I will repeat one more time that 600,000 jobs have been created.

As far as we compare to the rest of the world, Canada's GDP and employment have both recovered to pre-crisis levels, outperforming all of the G7 countries. We are proud of that. We are proud of the measures we have put forward with our economic action plan, and wait for it, the next phase is about to come.

EmploymentOral Questions

2:30 p.m.

NDP

Libby Davies NDP Vancouver East, BC

Mr. Speaker, we know that we have not recovered the jobs from that recession.

We know that the New Democrat job creation plan makes more sense than shipping jobs overseas, more sense than across-the-board corporate tax cuts, and more sense than rewarding already profitable corporations.

When will the government implement this practical, affordable, hiring credit to kickstart job creation and get our economy moving again? Why will it not do this?

EmploymentOral Questions

2:30 p.m.

Saint Boniface Manitoba

Conservative

Shelly Glover ConservativeParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Finance

Mr. Speaker, I am so glad to hear NDP members talk about a hiring credit, because in fact, that is coming in the next phase of Canada's economic action plan.

We recognize the vital role of small businesses, and that is important, because they play a very important role in the economy and job creation. That is why we have lowered their tax bill in many ways. We reduced the small business tax rate from 12% to 11%, but the NDP voted against it. We increased the amount of income eligible for the lower small business tax rate from $300,000 to $500,000, and the--

EmploymentOral Questions

2:30 p.m.

Conservative

The Speaker Conservative Andrew Scheer

Order. The hon. member for Saint-Jean.

AfghanistanOral Questions

2:30 p.m.

NDP

Tarik Brahmi NDP Saint-Jean, QC

Mr. Speaker, according to a release by Canadian Press, the defence minister was kept out of key decisions about Canada's role in the Afghan war.

This was a top defence priority, yet the Prime Minister was calling all the shots. The Prime Minister could have used some advice. Most agree our efforts should have focused more on peace talks and diplomacy.

Is Prime Minister still making foreign policy and defence decisions on his own, or does he now let his cabinet in the room?

AfghanistanOral Questions

2:30 p.m.

Central Nova Nova Scotia

Conservative

Peter MacKay ConservativeMinister of National Defence

Mr. Speaker, we have always worked closely with the Prime Minister and with cabinet.

However, it is interesting to hear the hon. member talk about somehow reaching out to the Taliban or improving coordination inside Afghanistan. Even the Afghanistan government and the president himself have said that as a result of the assassination of Rabbani, it is back to business as usual. This unfortunately belays the fact that we cannot work with a terrorist organization that does not respect human rights, that does not respect women and that refuses to disarm.

I will take no advice from the member opposite.

AfghanistanOral Questions

2:30 p.m.

NDP

Tarik Brahmi NDP Saint-Jean, QC

Mr. Speaker, the Prime Minister's Office wants to control public opinion so much that it kept even the Minister of National Defence in the dark about the mission in Afghanistan. However, Canadians wanted a different approach. They wanted an approach like the one proposed by the NDP. This government only cares about its own interests, which are not those of the Canadian people.

Conservative ministers do not even know what is going on in their own departments. So how can Canadians expect any transparency from this government?

AfghanistanOral Questions

2:30 p.m.

Central Nova Nova Scotia

Conservative

Peter MacKay ConservativeMinister of National Defence

Mr. Speaker, once again, that is false.

I am very proud of the efforts the Canadian Forces have put forward in Afghanistan in conjunction with our other government departments. CIDA and the Department of Foreign Affairs have created an environment where there are now seven million Afghan children going to school. We are immunizing children. We are working with all of our international partners and the Afghanistan government. However, the New Democratic Party opposite has consistently voted against those efforts.

EthicsOral Questions

2:35 p.m.

NDP

Matthew Kellway NDP Beaches—East York, ON

Mr. Speaker, the Department of National Defence continues to spring leaks about the minister's misuse of DND assets. By now we have all heard that the minister takes government jets like most Canadians take the bus. Now we find out that the Prime Minister personally kept the Minister of National Defence out of the loop on the Afghan war.

Why is the Prime Minister defending a minister that he himself has so little confidence in?

EthicsOral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Central Nova Nova Scotia

Conservative

Peter MacKay ConservativeMinister of National Defence

Mr. Speaker, as I and the Prime Minister have said, we use government assets for government business. That is exactly what has happened.

With respect to Afghanistan, we have made a magnificent effort on behalf of Canadians. They can be very proud of the work our men and women in uniform and our professional public servants have put forth in Afghanistan. As a government we have supported them. We have given them the resources. Unfortunately, the member's party opposite cannot say the same thing.

EthicsOral Questions

2:35 p.m.

NDP

Matthew Kellway NDP Beaches—East York, ON

Mr. Speaker, the Conservatives' use of the repatriation of fallen Canadian soldiers to cover the Minister of National Defence's abuse of government jets is appalling. Using fallen military men and women for political damage control tarnishes their sacrifice. It is an insult to the families of those soldiers.

When will the minister take responsibility for his own decisions and stop using fallen soldiers as an excuse for his abuse of government jets?

EthicsOral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Central Nova Nova Scotia

Conservative

Peter MacKay ConservativeMinister of National Defence

Mr. Speaker, the hon. member has it wrong. His feigned indignation once again brings shame to his party. In my four and one-half years as Minister of National Defence, I have made every effort to be at every repatriation of any fallen soldier, to be there to support the families and all the men and women in uniform who stand in harm's way on behalf of our country. I will continue to do that.

EthicsOral Questions

2:35 p.m.

NDP

Pierre-Luc Dusseault NDP Sherbrooke, QC

Mr. Speaker, is it true that the Minister of National Defence broke the rules regarding the use of government aircraft? I would like to quote an expert in the field who said, “The short answer is yes”. That is how the Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of National Defence replied yesterday when asked the question.

Does the Minister of National Defence agree with his colleague, friend and parliamentary secretary regarding the fact that he broke the rules regarding the use of government aircraft?

EthicsOral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Central Nova Nova Scotia

Conservative

Peter MacKay ConservativeMinister of National Defence

Mr. Speaker, as the member knows full well, and he should be intellectually honest, I have always complied with government rules and those published guidelines.

While I am on my feet, I want to correct the member and the network that he is quoting because they have since recounted. In fact, they said that they were wrong in the information they had on their website. While I am on my feet, they have also publicly disclosed that the cost of flights by the Department of National Defence are less than a third of the figures that CTV have been using.

The EnvironmentOral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Liberal

Kirsty Duncan Liberal Etobicoke North, ON

Mr. Speaker, the scientific journal Nature has just announced the discovery of an Arctic ozone hole. Co-authors on the study include scientists at Environment Canada who recently received letters saying that their jobs are in jeopardy.

When will these scientists have their letters rescinded so that they can continue their important work, and when will the government allow the scientists the freedom to discuss their discovery?

The EnvironmentOral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Thornhill Ontario

Conservative

Peter Kent ConservativeMinister of the Environment

Mr. Speaker, Canadians can indeed be proud of the great contribution that Environment Canada scientists make to international studies like this one on the arctic ozone hole. The findings are troubling, and that is why Environment Canada will continue to monitor the ozone. That is why the World Ozone and Ultraviolet Radiation Data Centre will continue to provide world-class services.

Finally, Environment Canada scientists regularly talk to the media.

The EnvironmentOral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Liberal

Marc Garneau Liberal Westmount—Ville-Marie, QC

Mr. Speaker, does the minister really understand the scope of the problem? Does he understand the science?

For the first time, a large hole has been discovered in the ozone layer over the Arctic. This is a very serious problem and it is believed that climate change might be a factor.

Even if he does not understand the science, does the minister realize that muzzling our scientists—and even worse, laying them off—would be very foolish, especially when their research has never been more crucial?