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House of Commons Hansard #44 of the 41st Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was judges.

Topics

Atomic Energy of Canada LimitedOral Questions

11:30 a.m.

Cypress Hills—Grasslands Saskatchewan

Conservative

David Anderson ConservativeParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Natural Resources and for the Canadian Wheat Board

Mr. Speaker, our government is taking a responsible approach. We are protecting taxpayers' interests while ensuring the future of the nuclear industry in Canada.

My colleague mentioned that there are 2,000 jobs in Mississauga alone that are connected to the nuclear industry. We are proud to protect those jobs. The NDP keeps talking about jobs for Canadians. We are protecting those jobs.

In this transition, I need to point out that the costs are actually lower than they were initially estimated to be. We have saved hundreds of Canadian jobs through doing that.

As the member mentioned, the costs associated with this divestiture are well known to the public.

Canadian Wheat BoardOral Questions

11:35 a.m.

NDP

Pat Martin NDP Winnipeg Centre, MB

Mr. Speaker, late last night, the heavy hand of the state came smashing down to destroy a great Canadian institution. It was a sham, it was a travesty and it would surely offend the sensibilities of anybody who would call themselves a democrat.

All that is left now is to pay for the minister's ideological zeal to kneecap the Canadian Wheat Board. With no money for social programs, no money for affordable housing and no money for the environment, where will the government find $500 million to live out the fantasy of that minister's obsession to destroy the Canadian Wheat Board?

Canadian Wheat BoardOral Questions

11:35 a.m.

Cypress Hills—Grasslands Saskatchewan

Conservative

David Anderson ConservativeParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Natural Resources and for the Canadian Wheat Board

Mr. Speaker, is it just me or is there a bit of irony in the fact that the member opposite wants to legalize marijuana but criminalize grain?

I also need to point out that we did meet last night, and one of the amendments that the NDP wanted to bring forward, which the Liberals supported, would actually have jailed farmers again. We were not prepared to go there.

Farmers woke up this morning thrilled to finally hear that Bill C-18 has been returned to the House. We will soon have a debate at report stage and third reading. Farmers only have a few more sleeps until they have freedom.

Auditor GeneralOral Questions

11:35 a.m.

Liberal

Mauril Bélanger Liberal Ottawa—Vanier, ON

Mr. Speaker, my question is quite straightforward. Why did the Conservative government not follow the example set by its own leader, the current Prime Minister, in its choice of a nominee for the next auditor general? Why did it not respect the criteria published in the Canada Gazette and recommend a nominee proficient in Canada's two official languages, a requirement it set at the start of the process?

Auditor GeneralOral Questions

11:35 a.m.

Parry Sound—Muskoka Ontario

Conservative

Tony Clement ConservativePresident of the Treasury Board and Minister for the Federal Economic Development Initiative for Northern Ontario

Mr. Speaker, as I am sure the hon. member is well aware, there is no language requirement in the Auditor General Act, which is the act that governs the Auditor General.

Regardless of that, we did search out bilingual candidates. However, at the end of the day, when looking at all of the different merits of the candidates, we chose the person who was the most meritorious, which is what one must do in a position like this. We stand by that appointment.

Mr. Ferguson has already promised to learn French and wants to learn French. The hon. member should give him the benefit of the doubt.

Auditor GeneralOral Questions

11:35 a.m.

Liberal

Mauril Bélanger Liberal Ottawa—Vanier, ON

Mr. Speaker, a few days ago I asked the government if it realized that it was opening Pandora's box by failing to observe its own selection criteria for the next Auditor General. This morning, we caught a glimpse of the first repercussions of their stubbornness: the Commissioner of Official Languages, the President of the Public Service Commission of Canada, all opposition parties and a Conservative senator are opposed and now a member of the Auditor General's internal audit committee has resigned.

Is it not time to stop this stubbornness?

Auditor GeneralOral Questions

11:35 a.m.

Parry Sound—Muskoka Ontario

Conservative

Tony Clement ConservativePresident of the Treasury Board and Minister for the Federal Economic Development Initiative for Northern Ontario

Mr. Speaker, I have already said that we picked the most qualified candidate, a candidate who wants to learn French and who will do so. He is a candidate who can do the job on behalf of Canadians. We support this candidate, and the Liberals should support him as well.

The EconomyOral Questions

11:35 a.m.

Liberal

Scott Brison Liberal Kings—Hants, NS

Mr. Speaker, over 71,000 Canadians lost their full-time jobs just last month. We now have 600,000 fewer full-time jobs than in August of 2008.

Doug Porter of BMO said that “losses of this magnitude are extremely rare, aside from recessionary periods”.

Scotiabank said, “The magnitude and breadth of the decline is disconcerting here”.

This is a jobless recovery and a human recession. When will the Conservatives invest in a real plan to create jobs and help Canadians get back to work?

The EconomyOral Questions

11:35 a.m.

Saint Boniface Manitoba

Conservative

Shelly Glover ConservativeParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Finance

Mr. Speaker, again, we sympathize with all Canadians who lost their jobs. However, I have to note that Canada is in a very good position when we compare it to other countries across the world. In fact, we have been saying for over a year that we are not immune to outside pressures like what is going on in Europe at this point.

The IMF and the OECD said that we would be the fastest-growing G7 economy in the next couple of years. A Reuters poll of 350 economists also said very recently, “Canada should see some of the strongest rates of growth compared with its G7 peers this year and next”.

Auditor GeneralOral Questions

11:40 a.m.

NDP

Alexandrine Latendresse NDP Louis-Saint-Laurent, QC

Mr. Speaker, the government has once again shown its contempt for Canadian francophones by choosing an auditor general who does not meet the job criteria in the government's own posting.

When the hon. member for Acadie—Bathurst asked the Conservatives about the contract awarded to the headhunting firm, they simply did not answer the question, as usual.

This morning we learned that the taxpayers spent $150,000 on finding someone who does not have all the necessary qualifications. How do the Conservatives justify this waste?

Auditor GeneralOral Questions

11:40 a.m.

Parry Sound—Muskoka Ontario

Conservative

Tony Clement ConservativePresident of the Treasury Board and Minister for the Federal Economic Development Initiative for Northern Ontario

Mr. Speaker, as I have already said, we looked for the most qualified candidate who has the right skills for this position. The candidate went through a very rigorous process and said in this House and in the Senate that it is important to learn French, that he wants to learn French and that he is going to learn French.

Auditor GeneralOral Questions

11:40 a.m.

NDP

Alexandrine Latendresse NDP Louis-Saint-Laurent, QC

Mr. Speaker, even the good friend of the Prime Minister's former director of communications—yes, he who was able to speak both official languages—Conservative Senator Housakos, is against the appointment of this Auditor General. There is no end to the problems with this appointment process: the headhunters did not post the job posting in French; $150,000 was wasted; and the Commissioner of Official Languages is going to investigate the matter. Confusion reigns in the Conservative ranks because the process was flawed.

The Auditor General has promised to learn French within a year. What are francophones supposed to do in the meantime?

Auditor GeneralOral Questions

11:40 a.m.

Parry Sound—Muskoka Ontario

Conservative

Tony Clement ConservativePresident of the Treasury Board and Minister for the Federal Economic Development Initiative for Northern Ontario

Mr. Speaker, as we have said, he has already started to learn French. He has the support of Sheila Fraser, the former Auditor General.

The interim Liberal leader in the province of New Brunswick supports this appointment as well, as someone who is in the opposition but still supports the appointment. He knows Mr. Ferguson very well. He has worked with him. Mr. Ferguson has the qualifications to be an excellent candidate for Auditor General. I encourage the hon. member to think the same way as reasonable people do.

Firearms RegistryOral Questions

11:40 a.m.

NDP

Djaouida Sellah NDP Saint-Bruno—Saint-Hubert, QC

Mr. Speaker, Quebec's National Assembly unanimously agreed that the government should keep the gun registry data. The government is accountable to the chiefs of police who use it thousands of times a day, to victims of crime and to Quebec taxpayers, who have already paid for this registry.

Why is this government refusing to side with victims and give this data to the provinces?

Firearms RegistryOral Questions

11:40 a.m.

Portage—Lisgar Manitoba

Conservative

Candice Bergen ConservativeParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Public Safety

Mr. Speaker, the data contained in the long gun registry are incomplete. The data are flawed and are increasingly more flawed and incomplete. We have committed to Canadians that we will end the long gun registry, and that means destroying the data.

I am disappointed in the NDP for penalizing its MPs from the Thunder Bay area for supporting their constituents and voting to end the long gun registry. I hope that will change as the bill goes forward.

Firearms RegistryOral Questions

11:40 a.m.

NDP

Pierre Jacob NDP Brome—Missisquoi, QC

Mr. Speaker, that is not an acceptable answer for the victims of the shooting at the École Polytechnique or for victims of other shootings. The gun registry is essential to public safety. The provinces and chiefs of police have said it over and over. They use the registry every day, yet this government is willing to get rid of the data in the registry for no good reason.

Will the government reverse its reckless decision so that we can avoid another shooting like the one at the École Polytechnique?

Firearms RegistryOral Questions

11:40 a.m.

Portage—Lisgar Manitoba

Conservative

Candice Bergen ConservativeParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Public Safety

Mr. Speaker, on this side of the House we are very proud to have 11 active police officers and former police officers in our party. We listen to police officers. That is why we have given provisions, for example in Bill C-10, that would actually help fight violent crime and gun crime. We want to focus on ensuring guns do not get into the wrong hands and that those kinds of tragedies that happened in Montreal will not happen again. The long gun registry does nothing to keep guns out of people's hands.

The EconomyOral Questions

11:45 a.m.

Conservative

Rick Norlock Conservative Northumberland—Quinte West, ON

Mr. Speaker, today we are reminded of how fragile the global economic recovery is and how that will impact Canada. Even though it is from outside our borders, we recognize the ongoing economic weakness in the United States and the very real economic consequences caused by European governments that ran massive deficits that will all be a challenge for Canada.

While the NDP, disappointingly, wants to engage in reckless, free-wheeling deficit spending, the type hurting Europe now, this government has a responsible plan. Could the parliamentary secretary talk about our responsible plan for the economy and jobs?

The EconomyOral Questions

11:45 a.m.

Saint Boniface Manitoba

Conservative

Shelly Glover ConservativeParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Finance

Mr. Speaker, while Canada's economy has created nearly 600,000 net new jobs since July 2009, we do sympathize with Canadians who have recently lost their jobs.

As we have said all along, we are not immune to the global economic turbulence being felt by our largest trading partners, Europe and the United States. As witnessed by events this week in Greece, the global economic recovery remains very fragile.

That is why we are working to implement the next phase of Canada's economic action plan with measures to help protect and create jobs, such as the hiring credit for small businesses. While the NDP is voting against all of those measures and the economy, our Conservative government will continue to do what is necessary and responsible to protect Canadians—

The EconomyOral Questions

11:45 a.m.

Conservative

The Speaker Conservative Andrew Scheer

The hon. member for Abitibi—Témiscamingue.

National DefenceOral Questions

11:45 a.m.

NDP

Christine Moore NDP Abitibi—Témiscamingue, QC

Mr. Speaker, the list of problems with the catastrophic F-35 program just keeps on growing. The safety of our pilots is compromised, costs are skyrocketing, the planes do not meet our needs and they cost so much that we cannot buy as many as we need.

My question is simple. How can a plane that is slower than the one it is replacing, that could injure or even kill our pilots, and that we cannot communicate with in the Canadian north actually be the best for our troops?

National DefenceOral Questions

11:45 a.m.

Vaughan Ontario

Conservative

Julian Fantino ConservativeAssociate Minister of National Defence

Mr. Speaker, the extensive and rigorous competition has taken place. Two airplanes squared off, and the F-35 won the competition. That is the best aircraft for our men and women well into the future and to ensure that our sovereignty is maintained in the future, as well.

National DefenceOral Questions

11:45 a.m.

NDP

David Christopherson NDP Hamilton Centre, ON

Mr. Speaker, the procurement tailspin continues.

Now we learn our pilots will not even be able to learn how to fly the F-35s in Canada. According to DND documents, pilot training will have to be moved from Cold Lake, Alberta to a facility in Florida run by Lockheed Martin.

The government is throwing billions at a plane that cannot fly here for pilots who cannot train here. Why is the government buying planes that take training jobs out of Canadian cities? Why is it abandoning Cold Lake?

National DefenceOral Questions

11:45 a.m.

Vaughan Ontario

Conservative

Julian Fantino ConservativeAssociate Minister of National Defence

Mr. Speaker, the member should know that in order to get traction, he should have his facts straight.

Long-term training on the F-35s will take place in Canada, just as currently is done with the CF-18s. It is reasonable that Canadians will do initial training with those from whom we purchase the aircraft, which has always been the case.

We will ensure that our men and women in uniform have the best equipment and the best training to do their job safely and effectively.

Ship RecyclingOral Questions

November 4th, 2011 / 11:45 a.m.

NDP

Megan Leslie NDP Halifax, NS

Mr. Speaker, Marine Atlantic sold two ferries on the condition that they would be broken down ethically. Instead, these boats wound up in Alang, India, which is one of the most dangerous shipyards in the world. It is known for its environmental and human rights violations. Last year around 27 workers were killed in the shipyard alone.

We are shipping dangerous asbestos overseas, and we are disposing of our waste with no regard for human safety. My question is, how could the government let this happen?