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House of Commons Hansard #143 of the 40th Parliament, 3rd Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was conservative.

Topics

Canada Revenue AgencyOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Bloc

Robert Carrier Bloc Alfred-Pellan, QC

Mr. Speaker, according to the television program Enquête, the government has had for a number of years information which proves that some employees in the Montreal office tried to get bribes in exchange for their complacency. However, the Conservative government, which was elected in 2006, has been dragging its feet since that time, just like it did in the Cinar case.

Can the minister tell us why his government has not been able to clean things up at the revenue agency? More importantly, how does he explain the fact that no charges have yet been laid?

Canada Revenue AgencyOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Fredericton New Brunswick

Conservative

Keith Ashfield ConservativeMinister of National Revenue

Mr. Speaker, we take these allegations very seriously. The RCMP is currently investigating the case.

Let us be clear. These allegations go back more than a decade.

Canada Revenue AgencyOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Bloc

Robert Carrier Bloc Alfred-Pellan, QC

Mr. Speaker, this government is incapable of assuming its responsibilities. It is always trying to evade the issue by saying that investigations are going on. The fact is that the federal government has known for years that there are some bad apples in the Montreal office, but no charges have yet been laid.

We are not asking the minister to give names. We are asking him to tell us since when he has had this stunning information and why he has not acted sooner. It is very simple.

Canada Revenue AgencyOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Fredericton New Brunswick

Conservative

Keith Ashfield ConservativeMinister of National Revenue

Mr. Speaker, as I said earlier, because this investigation is with the RCMP, we will wait for the RCMP investigation to be completed.

Citizenship and ImmigrationOral Questions

March 10th, 2011 / 2:40 p.m.

Liberal

Rob Oliphant Liberal Don Valley West, ON

Mr. Speaker, this past Monday the Minister of Citizenship, Immigration and Multiculturalism could not explain to the media where data used for targeting so-called “very ethnic” ridings came from. He said it may have been publicly available or perhaps commercially available. He told the CBC he would get back to it shortly.

Will the minister now tell the House who paid for the data used in the “Breaking Through” document and its appendices and provide a complete financial accounting to the Canadian taxpayers?

Citizenship and ImmigrationOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Calgary Southeast Alberta

Conservative

Jason Kenney ConservativeMinister of Citizenship

Mr. Speaker, I understand that demographic data is commercially available from Statistics Canada and other sources. The Conservative Party acquires that kind of data all the time.

If the member wants to ask the Conservative Party about its business, he should write to the Conservative Party. This is not a matter of government administration.

Let me be clear. That data was not acquired from Citizenship and Immigration Canada. It was not acquired using the resources in my department in any respect.

Citizenship and ImmigrationOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Liberal

Rob Oliphant Liberal Don Valley West, ON

Mr. Speaker, today Kevin Gaudet, the Canadian Taxpayers Federation's director, called for an investigation into the minister's use of government resources to win votes.

He said:

When you see the letter, when you see the increase of spending, all those things feed into the question of whether or not ministerial resources are being appropriately used, which is why we think there should be an investigation.

Would the minister, who was once president and CEO of the same federation, agree to an independent review of government resources being used by his office for Conservative political gain?

Citizenship and ImmigrationOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Calgary Southeast Alberta

Conservative

Jason Kenney ConservativeMinister of Citizenship

Mr. Speaker, as I have already told the House several times, last week, as soon as I learned that a member of my staff erroneously used 26 pieces of parliamentary stationery when my personal stationery ought to have been used, I reported the matter to you, sir. I sent you a $10.00 cheque in reimbursement. I reported the matter to the Ethics Commissioner. She is free to ask any questions that she would like.

However, the real question is, why is the Liberal Party trying to divert attention from its 13 years of failure to deliver on the priorities and aspirations of new Canadians? That is why the Liberals are trying to deflect the attention from their failed record.

Political FinancingOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Liberal

Martha Hall Findlay Liberal Willowdale, ON

Mr. Speaker, nine Conservative members shared close to $200,000 stolen from taxpayers.

This was a fraud that was created, planned, monitored and then hidden by top Conservative Party officials.

They often talk about the rights of the victims of Earl Jones.

When will these nine members give back the money stolen by the Conservative Party from their victims, the taxpayers?

Political FinancingOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Nepean—Carleton Ontario

Conservative

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

Mr. Speaker, the hon. member's question is simply wrong.

However, I will give her the occasion to explain why, on July 26, 2004, the Liberal Party of Canada transferred exactly $5,000 to the local campaign of Aileen Carroll, in the riding of Barrie, who then transferred that money back roughly 10 days later, exactly $5,000, on August 6. That is $5,000 in, $5,000 out. That is an in and out transaction.

I invite her to stand and explain what is different about that transaction from the ones that were undertaken by the Conservative Party.

Political FinancingOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Liberal

Martha Hall Findlay Liberal Willowdale, ON

Mr. Speaker, they broke the law. They falsified invoices. They committed fraud. Four senior Conservatives are now facing the possibility of jail. This was not a few renegade criminals. This fraud was created, it was conducted, it was controlled by the Conservative Party. This was a planned Conservative Party fraud and it was a fraud against Canadian taxpayers.

When will they pay the--

Political FinancingOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Liberal

The Speaker Liberal Peter Milliken

The hon. Parliamentary Secretary to the Prime Minister.

Political FinancingOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Nepean—Carleton Ontario

Conservative

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

Mr. Speaker, on January 5, 2006, the Liberal Party of Canada transferred $5,350 to the Liberal campaign in Malpeque, which then transferred back, on the exact same day, $5,350.

In the riding of Don Valley West, the Liberal Party transferred $5,000 on January 9, 2004, which then transferred $5,000 back to the Liberal Party on July 15 of the same year.

In Barrie, there was $5,000 in on July 26, 2004, and $5,000 out on August 6--

Political FinancingOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Liberal

The Speaker Liberal Peter Milliken

Order, please. The hon. member for Kelowna—Lake Country.

The EconomyOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Conservative

Ron Cannan Conservative Kelowna—Lake Country, BC

Mr. Speaker, my question is for my hon. colleague, the Minister of Public Works.

The priority of my constituents of Kelowna—Lake Country is the economy. The priority of Canadians is the economy. The priority of this government is the economy.

Yesterday, the Minister of Public Works and the Minister of Natural Resources announced that the government has pre-qualified its first 19 innovations which it may buy and test as part of the kick-start program.

Would the minister please provide the House with the details of that announcement and this program?

The EconomyOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Edmonton—Spruce Grove Alberta

Conservative

Rona Ambrose ConservativeMinister of Public Works and Government Services and Minister for Status of Women

Mr. Speaker, the member for Kelowna—Lake Country is right. The economy is the top priority of our government. We are pleased to support entrepreneurs who are delivering Canadian innovations with cutting-edge technology.

From a new technology to deal with oil spills from Halifax, to a new innovation from Ottawa to react to pandemics, this program would help kick-start innovative business ideas by helping them move from late-stage research, to development, into commercialization.

This is how we keep the economy moving, by supporting Canadian ideas and Canadian businesses.

National DefenceOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

NDP

Jack Harris NDP St. John's East, NL

Mr. Speaker, on the F-35s, Conservatives are using 10-year-old costing numbers provided by Lockheed Martin, the manufacturer. They did not even bother to do their own analysis.

According to the Parliamentary Budget Officer, the price tag for the F-35s now nears $30 billion, not the $16 billion claimed. This would cost us more than the entire war in Afghanistan.

How can the government be trusted when it is not telling Canadians the truth about the real cost of these jets?

National DefenceOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Edmonton Centre Alberta

Conservative

Laurie Hawn ConservativeParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of National Defence

Mr. Speaker, once again my colleague is simply wrong.

For openers, we based our costs on 20 years of service. Mr. Page added another 10 years to that. Clearly that is going to increase his number. Throw in some questionable assumptions that he used, instead of consulting the expert people we have in our program, the expert people in the eight other countries' programs. Why would he not have talked to them? He did very little or no consultation with Lockheed Martin or any of the people who actually know about the program.

We stand by the estimates of our experts and the experts of the other eight partner nations.

National DefenceOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

NDP

Thomas Mulcair NDP Outremont, QC

Mr. Speaker, the Parliamentary Budget Officer estimates that cost overruns for the F-35 fighter jets will total approximately $12 billion. It seems that we will have to shell out $29.3 billion, not $16 billion.

The report also highlights the absolute lack of guaranteed industrial and regional spinoffs. This is not surprising. Since there is not even a contract, there cannot be any guarantee that jobs will be created.

How can the Conservatives justify spending $29 billion without any guarantee that this will generate economic spinoffs and create jobs?

National DefenceOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Edmonton Centre Alberta

Conservative

Laurie Hawn ConservativeParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of National Defence

Mr. Speaker, cost overruns for research and development are being borne by the United States government.

Let me quote Mr. Claude Lajeunesse, president of AIAC:

The Government's leadership will ensure that Canada, along with its NATO counterparts, continues to play a key role in defending the values dear to all Canadians. The Next Generation Fighter is the single largest military aircraft procurement program of the Government of Canada in the foreseeable future and will positively affect the Canadian aerospace industry for decades to come.

Our government's top priority is growing the economy and creating jobs. We are committed to delivering a budget later this month and working on the priorities of Canadians which is the economy, not a needless election.

Employment InsuranceOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Bloc

Yves Lessard Bloc Chambly—Borduas, QC

Mr. Speaker, while the effects of the crisis are still evident, especially in the regions, and many workers are now without income as their benefits have stopped and they wait to return to seasonal work, the Conservative government continues to pillage the employment insurance fund instead of helping workers.

Does the government plan on using the upcoming budget to revise its policy on the unemployed by proposing substantial EI reforms, in order to increase benefits and make it easier to access the system?

Employment InsuranceOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Haldimand—Norfolk Ontario

Conservative

Diane Finley ConservativeMinister of Human Resources and Skills Development

Mr. Speaker, we have done a lot to help the unemployed in the past three years. We added five weeks to employment insurance and opened it up to self-employed workers. We also provided special benefits for long-tenured workers. I am doubtful of the Bloc's sincerity, since it voted against all of these measures that would help vulnerable people.

Forestry IndustryOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Bloc

Robert Bouchard Bloc Chicoutimi—Le Fjord, QC

Mr. Speaker, the Minister of State for the Economic Development Agency of Canada for the Regions of Quebec boasted about having injected new funds into the assistance program for silvicultural work. But he forgot to clarify that the work needs to be done by March 31, 2011 in order to benefit from the funding.

Instead of uselessly tooting his own horn, will the minister grant the industry's request and extend the program for silvicultural work?

Forestry IndustryOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Roberval—Lac-Saint-Jean Québec

Conservative

Denis Lebel ConservativeMinister of State (Economic Development Agency of Canada for the Regions of Quebec)

Mr. Speaker, for years this member refuted the fact that the crisis was caused by the market and new products.

In an article last week, he finally acknowledged what he had been denying for years. After harping on for years about loan guarantees, he realized that the ruling in London sided with the government. What we have been saying since the start is entirely true.

What has he done to help Quebec's forestry industry? Nothing. Just words. We are doing our job.

International Co-operationOral Questions

2:55 p.m.

Liberal

Bob Rae Liberal Toronto Centre, ON

Mr. Speaker, yesterday the Minister of International Cooperation told us that she was going to be co-operating fully with the committee and answering fully all questions. Perhaps we could start here at home in the House of Commons.

I would like to ask the minister once again, who did she speak to in that two-month gap between the CIDA recommendation and her decision on KAIROS? Who in the Prime Minister's Office did she speak to? Did she speak to the minister of immigration? Who did she talk before she made her decision?