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House of Commons Hansard #98 of the 41st Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was refugees.

Topics

National DefenceOral Questions

11:20 a.m.

Vaughan Ontario

Conservative

Julian Fantino ConservativeAssociate Minister of National Defence

Mr. Speaker, I will not comment on speculation. Canada has been a partner in the joint strike fighter program for 15 years. Our plan is to continue in the program. We have not signed a contract for purchase, as we have said.

Ultimately, we will ensure that we address the forthcoming report. As of now, we are not going to speculate.

National DefenceOral Questions

11:20 a.m.

NDP

Matthew Kellway NDP Beaches—East York, ON

Mr. Speaker, Canadians want answers to these questions. All they are getting from the minister is doublespeak. This is not the first time the government has been blasted by the Auditor General for complete mismanagement of military procurement. Helicopters come to mind. Even a British MP thinks Canada should get its money back for the subs boondoggle. Now we learn that the Auditor General agrees with New Democrats that this government has misled Parliament in its crusade on the F-35.

Will the government finally agree to hold an open and fair competition to replace the CF-18s?

National DefenceOral Questions

11:20 a.m.

Vaughan Ontario

Conservative

Julian Fantino ConservativeAssociate Minister of National Defence

Mr. Speaker, we respect the important work of the Auditor General. Parliament will receive the final report in the near future. Until then, it would be totally inappropriate for me to comment on rumours of what may or may not be included in that report.

41st General ElectionOral Questions

11:20 a.m.

Liberal

Ralph Goodale Liberal Wascana, SK

Mr. Speaker, coast to coast, victims of election fraud are now telling their stories. Tim McCoy in Ottawa, Charles Cochrane and Lori Bruce in New Brunswick, Peggy Walsh Craig in North Bay, Astrid Dimond in B.C. and hundreds more in at least 31 ridings all got calls from Conservatives, Conservatives who tried to stifle Canadians' basic right to vote. There is one common thread: the Conservative database called CIMS.

Will the government give Elections Canada and the RCMP full access to that little chamber of horrors known as CIMS?

41st General ElectionOral Questions

11:20 a.m.

Peterborough Ontario

Conservative

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

Mr. Speaker, we know that the Liberal Party acted in a very deliberate, disgraceful, deceptive and dishonest fashion during the election. When it made calls, it used phony people, phony numbers and very divisive messages. That is what the Liberal Party did. We know that the Liberal Party used Liberalist, the Liberal database, to make these calls.

Will the Liberal Party turn over all of its information to Elections Canada? Will it assist Elections Canada in this? It is clear the Liberal Party has a lot of questions to answer.

41st General ElectionOral Questions

11:20 a.m.

Liberal

Ralph Goodale Liberal Wascana, SK

Mr. Speaker, the government says that hundreds of people with irrefutable evidence of election fraud are just smears. If that is true, give Elections Canada full access to CIMS and produce the scripts used by Conservative callers. How did the callers know which specific individuals to target with disinformation to keep them from voting?

On top of that, even Conservatives have alleged funny money and fishy bank accounts in Vaughan, and voters' lists were padded in Rouge River and Nipissing.

When will we get a royal commission to restore faith in Canada's electoral system?

41st General ElectionOral Questions

11:25 a.m.

Peterborough Ontario

Conservative

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

Mr. Speaker, we do not want to wait for a royal commission. We want Elections Canada to do the work that it has been authorized to do, the work that this Parliament has put faith in Elections Canada to undertake.

What is remarkable though is that the Liberal Party is not assisting Elections Canada. It sat on the highest hill of hypocrisy criticizing this government while it knew full well that it had made deliberate, deceptive, dishonest and disgusting calls right across this country.

Canadians want and deserve answers from the Liberal Party. When will they get them? When will it assist Elections Canada?

41st General ElectionOral Questions

11:25 a.m.

Liberal

Stéphane Dion Liberal Saint-Laurent—Cartierville, QC

Mr. Speaker, not only are we assisting Elections Canada, but we are asking questions of this government. Why will my colleague not reply? What is he afraid of? Why will he not give an answer?

Canadians—real, flesh and blood people—like Lori Bruce from Fredericton and Peggy Walsh Craig from Nipissing and many others are all saying the same thing: they were called during the election campaign and asked if they would be supporting the Conservatives, and they replied no. Later, they were called back and given false information.

Is the government accusing these people of lying and being part of a conspiracy? Will the government take what happened to them seriously and tell Canadians what really went on? How does it translate—

41st General ElectionOral Questions

11:25 a.m.

Conservative

The Speaker Conservative Andrew Scheer

Order. The hon. parliamentary secretary.

41st General ElectionOral Questions

11:25 a.m.

Nepean—Carleton Ontario

Conservative

Pierre Poilievre ConservativeParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Transport

Mr. Speaker, we know what happened. The Liberal member for Guelph made fraudulent calls, misleading his own constituents by giving them a false name and number. After that, he had the audacity to rise in the House of Commons and engage in a smear campaign against our government, without any proof. After getting caught, he had to admit that he himself had violated the Canada Elections Act. The Liberal Party is the one that should disclose what it did during the election.

41st General ElectionOral Questions

11:25 a.m.

NDP

Chris Charlton NDP Hamilton Mountain, ON

Mr. Speaker, the fact is only the Conservatives are being investigated. The evidence is mounting. This scandal is not going away. Every day new information comes out that makes things look worse for the Conservatives. People received calls to identify how they would vote. The information was entered in the Conservatives' voter database. If they were not voting Conservative, those people received fake Elections Canada calls telling them to go to the wrong poll locations.

Pointing fingers at the opposition will not cut it. When will the government explain its role?

41st General ElectionOral Questions

11:25 a.m.

Peterborough Ontario

Conservative

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

Mr. Speaker, the NDP has had to apologize for making just those kinds of unsubstantiated smears outside the House, not once, not twice, but many times so far.

The New Democratic Party is being investigated by Elections Canada for its 2009 AGM and its 2011 AGM, once it submits that report, for taking illegal donations that breached the Canada Elections Act. Other investigations have been alluded to in the media that involve NDP members, certainly not this party.

41st General ElectionOral Questions

11:25 a.m.

NDP

Chris Charlton NDP Hamilton Mountain, ON

Mr. Speaker, the parliamentary secretary's spin simply is not working. It is only the Conservatives who are under investigation. Maybe they are not taking this seriously but Elections Canada sure is.

Elections Canada is broadening its search Canada-wide, with hundreds of new tips flowing in. It is finding new evidence that it says is “gold”.

As evidence against them mounts, when will the Conservatives stop pointing fingers and evading questions, and call a public inquiry?

41st General ElectionOral Questions

11:25 a.m.

Peterborough Ontario

Conservative

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

Mr. Speaker, just a few short months ago, the NDP, very deliberately and very deceptively, tried to siphon money off into the Broadbent Institute using money from taxpayers. Those members had to apologize to Elections Canada, they had to refund that money and they had to admit that they broke the law.

Ed Broadbent may be a great unifying force within the NDP but he was not entitled to that money.

41st General ElectionOral Questions

11:25 a.m.

NDP

Alexandrine Latendresse NDP Louis-Saint-Laurent, QC

Mr. Speaker, the noose is tightening around the Conservatives in Elections Canada's investigation of their electoral fraud, but this government continues to turn a deaf ear. It is trying to shift the attention and claiming that with the exception of a young volunteer who has been magically transformed into a master fraudster, this is not a big deal.

Will someone across the way take this situation seriously and stop mocking all these voters who were cheated in the last election?

41st General ElectionOral Questions

11:30 a.m.

Nepean—Carleton Ontario

Conservative

Pierre Poilievre ConservativeParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Transport

Mr. Speaker, I was hoping the hon. member would rise to apologize on behalf of her party for breaking the law by siphoning money off into the Broadbent Institute through a Canadian tax credit, for which Canadian taxpayers were on the hook. After getting caught, the NDP had to pay the money back.

We are co-operating with Elections Canada because we want the truth to come out, and we will continue to co-operate.

41st General ElectionOral Questions

11:30 a.m.

NDP

Alexandrine Latendresse NDP Louis-Saint-Laurent, QC

Mr. Speaker, the government's responses are becoming utterly ridiculous.

CBC is reporting that the voters who were sent to the wrong polling stations had clearly indicated that they would not vote Conservative. The Conservatives can try to create a distraction with their same old stories about the opposition, but the fact remains that electoral fraud benefited the Conservatives and no one else.

In order to restore Canadians' trust in our democracy, a public inquiry needs to be called.

When will the government finally act in the interest of the people and not just in the interest of its party?

41st General ElectionOral Questions

11:30 a.m.

Nepean—Carleton Ontario

Conservative

Pierre Poilievre ConservativeParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Transport

Mr. Speaker, it is a big mystery. Where are the questions from the hon. member for Winnipeg Centre? He rose in the House several times to make false allegations about the Conservative Party. After he was caught making false allegations, he had to apologize for his remarks. Now, he is not saying a word, and he was the one who made all the NDP's false allegations. I wonder where he is. We want to see him and hear him apologize.

Broadcasting IndustryOral Questions

11:30 a.m.

NDP

Peter Julian NDP Burnaby—New Westminster, BC

Mr. Speaker, today we learned that BCE intends to purchase the independent Quebec firm Astral Media. This is Canada's largest specialty TV broadcaster and has a large radio portfolio. This purchase is a perfect example of the increasing concentration we are seeing in the Canadian media.

What benefit would this stifling of competition bring to Canadians? Why should they be forced to pay higher prices on things like access fees to line the pockets of a handful of media giants? What action will the government take?

Broadcasting IndustryOral Questions

11:30 a.m.

Port Moody—Westwood—Port Coquitlam B.C.

Conservative

James Moore ConservativeMinister of Canadian Heritage and Official Languages

Mr. Speaker, the aspiration for an acquisition has been announced but there is a process that will unfold. The CRTC will be involved in the process and, within the CRTC process, as my hon. colleague should know, will be the opportunity for the public to make its views known. If my hon. colleague is a citizen and wants to make his views known he will have the opportunity to do so.

Broadcasting IndustryOral Questions

11:30 a.m.

NDP

Peter Julian NDP Burnaby—New Westminster, BC

Mr. Speaker, there will be less competition and higher prices with Bell taking over Astral. There is also the issue of local content. People in the regions no longer have news about their area. All decisions are made in Montreal and Toronto. This concentration of the media deals another blow to local content.

What guarantees do people have that local content will not suffer with this acquisition? Can the government guarantee that local content will not take a hit?

Broadcasting IndustryOral Questions

11:30 a.m.

Port Moody—Westwood—Port Coquitlam B.C.

Conservative

James Moore ConservativeMinister of Canadian Heritage and Official Languages

Mr. Speaker, the process has just started. An announcement was made this morning, and the process is now under way. Naturally, the CRTC will be involved in this process. If my colleague and his counterparts also wish to be involved in the process, they can take part in the public hearings, as this is now the CRTC's and not the government's responsibility.

TelecommunicationsOral Questions

March 16th, 2012 / 11:30 a.m.

NDP

Guy Caron NDP Rimouski-Neigette—Témiscouata—Les Basques, QC

Mr. Speaker, telecommunications infrastructure is critical to our modern economy. Without access to the Internet, people cannot do business. That is why consumers and the industry have both asked the government to help improve coverage in rural regions.

The minister's plan is based on the assumption that a business may be able to purchase two spectrum blocks. What if that does not happen? There is no plan. Why is the minister playing games with rural Canadians' access to the digital economy?

TelecommunicationsOral Questions

11:30 a.m.

Edmonton—Mill Woods—Beaumont Alberta

Conservative

Mike Lake ConservativeParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Industry

Mr. Speaker, we said that we took a balanced decision to create more choices for Canadian consumers with this decision. It is not just stakeholders who support this decision. The hon. member himself said after the decision:`

...we heard the intention of the government to cover 90 percent of the Canadian territory within five years. We like the idea. I come from a rural riding. There are major problems of coverage in my riding so this is something that is very dear to me...

TelecommunicationsOral Questions

11:35 a.m.

NDP

Guy Caron NDP Rimouski-Neigette—Témiscouata—Les Basques, QC

Mr. Speaker, we like the goals, but we are skeptical about the results that will be achieved. In this case, there is much to be skeptical about.

The government has made all kinds of statements, but it has provided no proof that these measures will reduce costs for consumers, particularly rural consumers. The exclusion of one company because of requirements to deploy to rural areas will effectively eliminate competition and end up reducing consumer choice.

Yesterday, the minister stated in committee that he did not know how he intended to spend the proceeds of the auction.

Will he promise the House that he will use a portion of the funds to guarantee equal access for Canadians in rural areas?