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House of Commons Hansard #149 of the 40th Parliament, 3rd Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was quebec.

Topics

Government AccountabilityOral Questions

11:20 a.m.

Ottawa West—Nepean Ontario

Conservative

John Baird ConservativeLeader of the Government in the House of Commons

Mr. Speaker, this government has brought forward major reforms to the justice legislation to ensure that violent offenders who commit offences against children spend more time in jail. We are pleased with those reforms.

We believe that tax cuts are an important part of economic growth. That is why the Ontario Liberal government of Dalton McGuinty was supporting those tax cuts with us every step of the way.

We also believe that when men and women sign up for the Canadian Forces, the Canadian people should stand behind them. We do not want to turn the Canadian air force into a no-fly zone like the Liberal Party would.

National DefenceOral Questions

11:20 a.m.

Liberal

Ralph Goodale Liberal Wascana, SK

Mr. Speaker, the Parliamentary Budget Officer demolished Conservative war plane calculations. The U.S. Government Accountability Office says that, indeed, the price has doubled to $30 billion. It is stealth pricing. The Pentagon says that it is even worse.

That is what we get with no competition. We do not get the right plane at the best price with the best industrial benefits, and it crowds out seniors and students, child care, health care and housing. Sixty-eight per cent of Canadians say that the government is wrong on the jet plane fiasco.

Why that choice?

National DefenceOral Questions

11:20 a.m.

Liberal

The Speaker Liberal Peter Milliken

Order, please. The hon. Minister of National Defence.

National DefenceOral Questions

11:20 a.m.

Central Nova Nova Scotia

Conservative

Peter MacKay ConservativeMinister of National Defence

Mr. Speaker, none of that is true, as the hon. member himself knows. Professional public servants have looked at the Parliamentary Budget Officer's numbers and they reject his methodology.

The reality is that we will be buying these aircraft at the best price. They are the best aircraft, in fact, the only aircraft available.

We will take no lessons from the member opposite and his party, which gutted the Canadian Forces during its time in office, which cancelled important helicopter programs and is prepared to do the same thing and put men and women in jeopardy with underfunded equipment.

That is what we get with the Liberal Party.

The Province of QuebecOral Questions

11:20 a.m.

Bloc

Gilles Duceppe Bloc Laurier—Sainte-Marie, QC

Mr. Speaker, today we are facing a government that has repeatedly deceived us and attacked democracy. It is also a government that has clearly decided to ignore Quebec and its economic priorities. This same government is determined to make us believe that it does not want an election, even though it has made every effort to trigger one.

Does the Prime Minister realize that, based on his body of work, Quebeckers have lost confidence in him?

The Province of QuebecOral Questions

11:25 a.m.

Mégantic—L'Érable Québec

Conservative

Christian Paradis ConservativeMinister of Natural Resources

Mr. Speaker, we have presented a responsible budget. Our country is in the best position of all G7 countries. We were the last to enter the recession and the first to come out of it. We are in the best position ever. We have measures that will increase the productivity of our SMEs. Yesterday, we signed a historic agreement with Quebec for the development of offshore oil and gas. The Bloc is obviously complaining because it does not want such a thing to work within the federation. However, we want it to work and it will work.

The Province of QuebecOral Questions

11:25 a.m.

Bloc

Gilles Duceppe Bloc Laurier—Sainte-Marie, QC

Mr. Speaker, we are not complaining about this agreement. We are pleased about it, but we find that the minister has very little to be proud about. After all, the government signed an agreement with Newfoundland and Labrador in 2005, and it took 12 years to come to an agreement with Quebec; the government compensated the provinces that harmonized their sales taxes within the first year, and it has yet to settle with Quebec after 19 years. This minister does not have a lot to be proud of.

This government has been tarnished by patronage, influence peddling, electoral fraud and RCMP investigations.

Do they realize that Quebeckers have lost all confidence in these clowns?

The Province of QuebecOral Questions

11:25 a.m.

Mégantic—L'Érable Québec

Conservative

Christian Paradis ConservativeMinister of Natural Resources

Mr. Speaker, insults are the weapon of the weak. Speaking of pride, we came to power and we solved the problem of Old Harry. I headed up the Department of Natural Resources for one year, and during that time we made it our priority and we resolved it. The Bloc, however, stood by and watched for 12 years. They voted against supply management, which was in the throne speech; they voted against the economic action plan; they voted against $3 billion for the forestry industry, $1 billion for the community assistance fund, $1 billion for the pulp and paper green transformation program—

The Province of QuebecOral Questions

11:25 a.m.

Some hon. members

Oh, oh!

The Province of QuebecOral Questions

11:25 a.m.

Liberal

The Speaker Liberal Peter Milliken

Order, please.

The hon. member for Joliette.

The Province of QuebecOral Questions

March 25th, 2011 / 11:25 a.m.

Bloc

Pierre Paquette Bloc Joliette, QC

Mr. Speaker, not only are the Conservatives thumbing their noses at democracy but they are also thumbing their noses at the truth, because it was a Bloc motion on supply management that was adopted here in December 2005. In addition to thumbing their noses at the truth and democracy, they are also thumbing their noses at Quebec. They are constantly attacking Quebec: they refuse to compensate Quebec for the harmonized GST and QST; they refuse to support Quebec's forestry and manufacturing industries; they refuse to improve the employment insurance program; they are indifferent to Quebec's regions; and they are trying to reduce Quebec's political weight.

Do the Prime Minister and the government understand why Quebeckers do not have any confidence in them?

The Province of QuebecOral Questions

11:25 a.m.

Roberval—Lac-Saint-Jean Québec

Conservative

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

Mr. Speaker, if the singer Dalida were still alive, she would be singing, “Words, words, words...nothing but words”. A thousand campaign promises later and there may be another campaign. We have delivered on our promises as never before. The forestry industry has received more money from this government than from any other of this country's governments.

The Province of QuebecOral Questions

11:25 a.m.

Bloc

Pierre Paquette Bloc Joliette, QC

Mr. Speaker, the Bloc Québécois is very proud to speak on behalf of Quebeckers. The hon. member speaks on behalf of Canadians. With its attacks against Quebec, its budget that does not meet the needs of Quebec's people or Quebec's regions, and its undemocratic behaviour, the Conservative government does not have the confidence of the Quebec nation.

Does the Prime Minister understand that, by turning his back on Quebec and on democracy, he is the one who is forcing an election?

The Province of QuebecOral Questions

11:25 a.m.

Roberval—Lac-Saint-Jean Québec

Conservative

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

Mr. Speaker, it is just like a man from Joliette to say that a person from Lac-Saint-Jean is not a Quebecker. This man has nothing to teach me about nationalism. I cannot count how many times I have travelled all over Quebec since I became the Minister of State for the Economic Development Agency. How many times has he travelled the province? Quebec has never received so much from MPs from the Quebec regions and I am proud to be part of the government's team of Quebeckers.

The BudgetOral Questions

11:25 a.m.

NDP

Jack Layton NDP Toronto—Danforth, ON

Mr. Speaker, the Prime Minister's stubbornness is remarkable. He has been sulking in his office for three days. Why? If he truly wanted to avoid an election, he could have shown some initiative and some flexibility. He could have picked up the phone and called the others to try to find some common ground. But no. The truth is that the Prime Minister would rather have an election than—

The BudgetOral Questions

11:30 a.m.

Liberal

The Speaker Liberal Peter Milliken

Order. The hon. Leader of the Government in the House of Commons.

The BudgetOral Questions

11:30 a.m.

Ottawa West—Nepean Ontario

Conservative

John Baird ConservativeLeader of the Government in the House of Commons

Mr. Speaker, if the leader of the New Democratic Party genuinely wanted a solution, then why has his campaign bus been idling in front of the House of Commons for the past week?

The reality is that we saw the leader of the NDP rewrite the budget of the member for Wascana. Simply put, the NDP's company is just far too expensive. We saw that in Ontario, where taxes rose dramatically, when spending spiralled out of control. We need a low tax pro-job agenda for our great country.

The BudgetOral Questions

11:30 a.m.

NDP

Jack Layton NDP Toronto—Danforth, ON

Mr. Speaker, the Conservatives actually had an opportunity this week to help Canadian families by listening to practical, affordable New Democrat proposals: to take the federal tax off home heating, because constituents do not like it and it is making life hard for them; to lift Canadian seniors out of poverty, all of them; to ensure Canadians can retire with some dignity and security by doing something significant about the Canada pension plan; and to take immediate action to help the millions of Canadians who do not have a family doctor.

Those things could have been done. Why not help Canadians instead of provoking an election?

The BudgetOral Questions

11:30 a.m.

Ottawa West—Nepean Ontario

Conservative

John Baird ConservativeLeader of the Government in the House of Commons

Mr. Speaker, nothing could be further from the truth. We brought forward a budget this week that had substantial new resources to help vulnerable low income seniors and volunteer firefighters. We increased health care transfers to the provinces by 6%. We put measures in there to support small businesses, the real economic engine of our country.

However, every time we bring forward these good measures, the New Democratic Party votes against it. What it wants to do is to form a coalition with the Liberals and the Bloc Québécois and raise taxes by tens of billions of dollars. Canadians will not let it get away with it.

The BudgetOral Questions

11:30 a.m.

NDP

Jack Layton NDP Toronto—Danforth, ON

Mr. Speaker, when we persuaded the Conservatives to put $1 billion forward to help the unemployed, we voted for it. They accepted our good and practical proposal.

I will match the Conservative stubbornness to not work with other people with a relentless focus on helping Canadian families, day in and day out.

The Conservative government does not have to go down like Joe Clark or Paul Martin. The Conservatives could change their ways and they could change their budget. However, they are just plain stubborn. If they are serious, we are ready to work.

Why are the Conservatives intent on provoking an election?

The BudgetOral Questions

11:30 a.m.

Ottawa West—Nepean Ontario

Conservative

John Baird ConservativeLeader of the Government in the House of Commons

Mr. Speaker, we do not want an election. Canadian families do not want an election. They want all hands on deck focused on jobs and the economy.

The reality is that we will not follow the example of the member for Wascana and have hotel room meetings in Toronto with the leader of the NDP and have him walk out with $5 billion in his pocket. It is financially irresponsible and it is not in the best interest of Canadian families.

We brought forward initiatives to cut taxes for Canadian families by more than $3,000, and every time we did, the NDP voted against it.

EthicsOral Questions

11:30 a.m.

Liberal

Denis Coderre Liberal Bourassa, QC

Mr. Speaker, let us talk about what happened in 2004 when the Prime Minister tried to get in bed with the Bloc Québécois after he took the first steps to meet with that party. Where was that meeting held? We could talk about that at length.

I want to talk about Bruce Carson, the former chief of staff and advisor to the Prime Minister. He was disbarred for stealing from clients. We call that white collar crime. He went to prison for that. He apparently has a thing for escorts. He is a manipulator and he could be the target of blackmail. What is more, Carson is currently being investigated by the RCMP.

Can the Conservatives explain to us how this guy got security clearance?

EthicsOral Questions

11:30 a.m.

Ottawa West—Nepean Ontario

Conservative

John Baird ConservativeLeader of the Government in the House of Commons

Mr. Speaker, the member opposite suggested the efforts by a coalition in 2004. Here is what the leader of the Bloc Québécois said about that effort: “In no way are we in a coalition and we won't be in a coalition”.

Here is what the leader of the NDP said about that same effort: “It's impossible to imagine that these three parties, with their completely different policy platforms, could form a coalition as we find in other countries”.

There are the facts.

EthicsOral Questions

11:35 a.m.

Liberal

Denis Coderre Liberal Bourassa, QC

Mr. Speaker, we could always table the letter sent to the Governor General by the absent Prime Minister who wanted to get in bed with the other parties to replace the government. We will rise on a point of order later.

We now learn that the leader of the government in the other place has also admitted to meeting with Carson for a coffee. In fact, we know that he often worked in her office.

Coincidentally, the plan that would have made a fortune for Carson's favourite former escort on the backs of the first nations is being reviewed in the other place.

Did Carson really do so much for the Prime Minister and the Conservatives that he deserves all this access and privilege?

EthicsOral Questions

11:35 a.m.

Ottawa West—Nepean Ontario

Conservative

John Baird ConservativeLeader of the Government in the House of Commons

Mr. Speaker, the member opposite cannot name a single dollar that ever went to that individual. These are serious allegations.