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House of Commons Hansard #128 of the 42nd Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was quebec.

Topics

2:05 p.m.

Liberal

The Speaker Liberal Geoff Regan

It being Wednesday, we will now have the singing of the national anthem led by the hon. member for Nanaimo—Ladysmith.

[Members sang the national anthem]

Quebec's InterestsStatements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Bloc

Rhéal Fortin Bloc Rivière-du-Nord, QC

Mr. Speaker, so far this session, the federal government has made it clear that a step forward for Canada means a step backward for Quebec.

Exhibit A: Muskrat Falls. The government gave Newfoundland and Labrador a loan guarantee so that it can engage in unfair competition in the sale of hydroelectricity to the Americans.

Exhibit B: peanuts for Quebec cheese producers as so-called compensation for what they will lose when 17,700 tonnes of European cheese hits the Canadian market.

Exhibit C: Bill C-29 and the Liberal vote to undermine Quebec's consumer protection law.

Exhibit D: the government's refusal to support Bombardier.

In Ottawa, Quebec takes a back seat, but luckily, we are here. The Bloc will continue to speak out against government measures that are bad for Quebec. This government deserves coal in its stocking this Christmas.

All the same, my colleagues and I wish all Quebeckers and our parliamentary colleagues a merry Christmas and a happy new year.

I suggest they brace themselves, because when we come back, we are not going to go easy on them.

Châteauguay—LacolleStatements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Liberal

Brenda Shanahan Liberal Châteauguay—Lacolle, QC

Mr. Speaker, it is with great pleasure that I rise today to speak about the incredible Christmas spirit that can be found in my riding.

Where do I begin: with the Santa Claus parade in Saint-Rémi, old fashioned concerts and festivities in Mercier, Châteauguay, and Saint-Isidore, or the numerous activities in Sainte-Clotilde, Napierville, and Léry, as well as every other town and village in my region.

I would also like to remind my colleagues and constituents that many toy and food drives are going on during this season of sharing.

I invite the people of Châteauguay—Lacolle to support organizations active in this area, such as Actions familles in Sainte-Martine, the Comité d'entraide de Saint-Jacques-le-Mineur, Sourire sans faim in Saint-Rémi, and the Châteauguay food bank and Rencontre châteaugoise, partners of the Saint Vincent de Paul Society.

This is the true spirit of Christmas.

Edmonton GriesbachStatements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Conservative

Kerry Diotte Conservative Edmonton Griesbach, AB

Mr. Speaker, it is beginning to look a lot like Christmas, but for many people in Edmonton Griesbach, it is not going to be very jolly.

It is the same throughout Alberta, many folks are left out in the cold. Unemployment is almost 10%. People are bracing for a job-killing carbon tax, and EI benefits are running out. The Liberals are being Grinches. Despite their out-of-control spending, they failed to create one single net new full-time job. Their ultra-green agenda has Albertans seeing red.

My constituents deserve a government that keeps its word and bolsters the economy. I will continue to stand up for those who want jobs, not welfare; who want pipelines, not pipe dreams; who want action, not broken promises. They deserve more than a Liberal lump of coal.

That said, I wish my constituents and all members of this House a very merry Christmas and a happy, healthy new year.

Natural ResourcesStatements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Liberal

Darshan Singh Kang Liberal Calgary Skyview, AB

Mr. Speaker, our government has approved the Trans Mountain and Line 3 pipeline projects. These projects will generate significant economic benefits, including $4.5 billion in government revenues, money that can be reinvested in our health care, education, environment, and a clean energy future. The Trans Mountain and Line 3 projects will create more than 22,000 direct jobs.

We may come from different political parties with different perspectives, but I am asking my Alberta Conservative colleagues to stop acting skeptical about getting these pipelines built. Our goal of bringing prosperity back to Alberta is the same. Their current attitude is hurting investment into our province and slowing recovery of jobs to Albertans.

My Alberta Liberal caucus colleagues and I offer to work with members across the way to ensure the pipelines are built, the Alberta economy grows, and the environment is protected.

I wish everybody a merry Christmas and a happy new year.

Natural ResourcesStatements By Members

2:05 p.m.

NDP

Peter Julian NDP New Westminster—Burnaby, BC

Mr. Speaker, British Columbians remember 2015 well. They remember the promises that the Prime Minister and Liberal candidates made, that Kinder Morgan would not be approved using Stephen Harper's methods and the pipeline would not be forced on B.C. without community support and the consent of first nations.

Now in 2016, the Prime Minister has betrayed British Columbians by breaking all of these promises. The Liberal Kinder Morgan pipeline makes a mockery of the government's pretension to combat climate change. It even destroys some value-added jobs in B.C.

I worked in an oil refinery, and I have been ankle-deep in oil. I have a healthy respect for a substance that has to be treated with extreme caution at all times. Just one error by somebody in an important role could wipe out tourism for years in the Lower Mainland and the coast, and wipe out our coastal fisheries for a generation.

New Democrats have been clear: we will stand up against this betrayal of British Columbians, we will stand with first nations, we will stand up for our coast, and we stand against the Kinder Morgan Trans Mountain pipeline.

S. Thaman SinghStatements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Liberal

Gagan Sikand Liberal Mississauga—Streetsville, ON

Mr. Speaker, I would like to congratulate the Brar family on launching the biographical book on S. Thaman Singh.

He was a wounded British Punjabi veteran of World War I, who after the war, joined the non-violent fight for India's independence from British imperialism. He led many peaceful protests in Bombay and marched alongside Mahatma Gandhi during the famous salt march of India. His turban distinguished him as a Sikh, leading the protests. Sadly, the freedoms that he fought for were never realized during his lifetime. In 1975, his wife and family immigrated to Canada, in a land that echoed the values and freedoms he so desperately desired for his country of birth.

His family is shaped by his integrity, his values, his courage, and his conviction. They add to the plethora of resilient and dynamic immigrants who enrich the fabric of Canada, a country that continues to embrace diversity.

Cariboo—Prince GeorgeStatements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Conservative

Todd Doherty Conservative Cariboo—Prince George, BC

Mr. Speaker, I have to say, 2016 was one for the books. It is hard to believe that the holidays are once again upon us and another chapter is closed.

Whether it was attending the 90th anniversary of the Williams Lake Stampede, doing the 22-push-up challenge with Shaolin monks on the streets of historic gold rush town of Barkerville, walking a full 24 hours in the Prince George Relay for Life for Cancer, or being present to witness new Canadians taking the sacred oath of citizenship, this year has been a roller coaster of emotion.

I am so proud to be the member of Parliament for Cariboo—Prince George to serve and represent the incredible families of my riding.

As we begin to unwind with our family, friends, and loved ones over the coming weeks, and recharge and reflect on the year that has just passed, I want to take this moment on behalf of my family, Kelly, Kassi, Kaitlyn, Jordan, and Josh, to wish all a very merry Christmas and a happy new year.

Merry Christmas and happy new year.

Canada 150 CelebrationStatements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Liberal

Pam Goldsmith-Jones Liberal West Vancouver—Sunshine Coast—Sea to Sky Country, BC

Mr. Speaker, this weekend in Sechelt, on the traditional territory of the Shishálh people, the Sechelt arts council, the mayor, and the school district principal for aboriginal programs announced their plans for their Canada 150 celebration, “s-yìyaya: Our Families. Our Stories.”

Shishálh elders, non-indigenous early settlers, and young people are embarking on a year of storytelling with the support of professional artists. The Shishálh have a proud oral tradition. Post-contact settlers have proud stories too. Capturing these is a way for young people to learn and to lead in the community and in the country through truth and reconciliation.

Indigenous and non-indigenous, we have a shared history, both light and dark. s-yìyaya, family, we are one.

FrederictonStatements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Liberal

Matt DeCourcey Liberal Fredericton, NB

Mr. Speaker, it is the number one city in North America for business cost and one of Canada's best cities for export. It is Atlantic Canada's most entrepreneurial city and home to Canada's most entrepreneurial university. It is Canada's first free wireless city and twice named one of the world's most intelligent communities.

It ranks eighth in the world for clean air, fourth in Canada for raising a family, and third as the best place to retire.

It is home to a skilled and bilingual workforce and one of the top destinations in the country for millennials looking to carve themselves a future. With more businesses per capita than elsewhere in the country, is it any wonder that Fredericton was recently named Startup Canada's 2016 Startup Community of the Year?

I congratulate Task Force Fredericton Startup Network, municipal leadership, and community members across the region who are driving this nation-leading culture of innovation and entrepreneurship in Freddy Beach.

Red Deer—Mountain ViewStatements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Conservative

Earl Dreeshen Conservative Red Deer—Mountain View, AB

Mr. Speaker, Christmas is a time of giving and today I am honoured to pay tribute to two of Red Deer—Mountain View's most generous givers, Jack and Joan Donald. The Donalds are very successful entrepreneurs and are the driving force behind Parkland Fuel Corporation. Just as they have been significant contributors to our local economy, they have also given back to our community for decades. Jack and Joan have led fundraising campaigns for STARS, Red Deer College, the Westerner, the hospice in Red Deer, and most recently, their $3-million gift to RDC is the largest the college has ever received. This generous gift will go toward critical infrastructure in the construction of the Donald Health & Wellness Centre, a wing of the Gary W. Harris Canada Games Centre.

The Donalds' leadership, philanthropy, and tireless volunteerism is a legacy that will have an enormous impact for generations to come. On behalf of central Alberta, I thank Jack and Joan.

Human RightsStatements By Members

December 14th, 2016 / 2:10 p.m.

Liberal

Omar Alghabra Liberal Mississauga Centre, ON

Mr. Speaker, last week Liberal Muslim and Jewish MPs got together to enjoy a Christmas dinner. We shared stories and gifts. We discussed our values and the so much we have in common. We talked about how there were those who wanted to label individuals based on their race, gender, sexual orientation, or beliefs. They wanted to sow distrust based on stereotypes.

Left unchallenged, such prejudice would erode the values on which our society is built. Our kids will stop believing us if we tell them that all they need to do is work hard and fair to accomplish anything they want, regardless of their background. We have a responsibility to set an example that we stand together, united against labels and hate.

Think about this. What other country brings Jewish and Muslim politicians together to celebrate Christmas and declare solidarity against discrimination? The world is watching. We need to show the best of ourselves.

On that note, Mr. Speaker, I want to wish you, my colleagues, and all Canadians a peaceful and rewarding holiday season.

Random Acts of Kindness ActivistsStatements By Members

2:15 p.m.

Liberal

TJ Harvey Liberal Tobique—Mactaquac, NB

Mr. Speaker, I rise today on behalf of my riding of Tobique—Mactaquac.

I would like to begin my wishing my second oldest daughter, Madilyn, a happy 11th birthday. I apologize I could not not be there.

My riding of Tobique—Mactaquac is rich in beauty. The humanity and hospitality shown by the people who live there is infectious. I have had several people mention this to me on several occasions.

In keeping with both the hustle of the holiday season and the true meaning behind this time of year, while continuing to live up to our reputation, I would like to put a challenge out to all my constituents. Let us be RAKtivists, random acts of kindness activists.

In the coming days and weeks throughout this joyous time of year, let us promote a positive tomorrow by performing random acts of kindness.

They can compliment a stranger, hold the door for someone, shovel the driveway for a senior, volunteer, buy lunches for students who need it at school, leave a great big tip, buy coffee for the person behind, or clean the snow off someone's car.

Any small action can change someone’s entire day.

Let us make every day random acts of kindness day. Commit to the kindness and perform the act.

Like my friend @Gimppopotamus once said, “Happiness is like jam. You can't spread even a little without getting some on yourself”.

Community LeaderStatements By Members

2:15 p.m.

Conservative

Larry Miller Conservative Bruce—Grey—Owen Sound, ON

Mr. Speaker, on Saturday night, Flesherton native and Ottawa Senators right-winger Chris Neil played in NHL game number 1,000. Since 1998, this Grey county son has inspired hockey fans everywhere with his work ethic, grit, and determination in each and every game.

Playing 1,000 NHL hockey games is a huge feat in itself, but to do it with one team is very rare. It demonstrates an incredible amount of loyalty from both Chris Neil and the Ottawa Senators.

Chris and his wife Caitlin have been active leaders in this community, including service as co-chairs of Roger Neilson House, which enhances the lives of children and their families facing serious illnesses.

I am proud to announce to the House that his home community of Grey Highlands has proclaimed today Chris Neil day. The community Chris grew up in is especially proud to call him a native son.

We congratulate him on this great milestone and thank him for being an an inspiration and a role model, and for the rock'em sock'em memories.

Global Refugee Sponsorship InitiativeStatements By Members

2:15 p.m.

Liberal

Arif Virani Liberal Parkdale—High Park, ON

Mr. Speaker, one year ago, on December 10, our national project to resettle Syrian refugees reached an important milestone as the first plane touched down on Canadian soil.

We are fortunate to have seen so many Canadians open their doors, their communities, and their hearts, and to have found partners eager to take up the opportunity of building a rich, diverse, and compassionate Canada.

I would like to acknowledge the global refugee sponsorship initiative. This initiative is led by the Canadian government, the UNHCR, the University of Ottawa, the Radcliffe Foundation, and the Open Society Foundations. It is designed to provide training and advice to countries interested in replicating Canada's private sponsorship model.

This week, the initiative is bringing together sponsorship groups, refugees, and governments from nine different countries interested in replicating Canada's tremendously successful model. This is vital work. Each of us should be proud of how much Canadians have done to make a difference.

Violence Against WomenStatements By Members

2:15 p.m.

NDP

Cheryl Hardcastle NDP Windsor—Tecumseh, ON

Mr. Speaker, according to the Disabled Women' Network, the rates of sexual violence, physical and verbal violence, and systemic violence are at least three times higher for young women and girls living with disabilities. One in five women in Canada lives with a disability, and they suffer the highest rates of poverty and unemployment.

The Prime Minister has stated repeatedly over the last year that his goal is to build a stronger, more inclusive Canada. If he is serious, here is where he must start. He must ensure that the proposed federal strategy against gender-based violence, as well as the Canadian poverty reduction strategy, which should really be poverty elimination strategy, are well and properly funded and completely accessible to women and girls living with disabilities. If we are serious, if Canada is to become more inclusive, then everything we do in government, every law and every policy, must be viewed through the lens of disability. This lens must be gendered; it has to be.

EthicsStatements By Members

2:20 p.m.

Conservative

Blaine Calkins Conservative Red Deer—Lacombe, AB

Mr. Speaker, it is that time of year again. That is right, Festivus is upon us and I am filled with the sentiments of Frank Costanza who said, “The tradition of Festivus begins with the airing of grievances. I got a lot of problems with you people and now you're gonna hear about it”.

For example, the Prime Minister set out his own accountability rules, which he and most of his ministers wasted no time in breaking. We have ministers selling access to themselves for $1,500 a pop to rich lobbyists and foreign governments. Not only that, the Prime Minister has admitted to taking money from elite billionaires who make no effort to hide their intention to buy influence with government.

Most Canadians do not have $1 million to buy the PM a statue. Most Canadians are not going to fork over $1,500 just so they can get in a room with him and his ministers. It is time the Prime Minister and his government stopped pandering to elite donors and started listening to ordinary Canadians. We are only asking for a “Festivus for the rest of us”.

EthicsStatements By Members

2:20 p.m.

Liberal

The Speaker Liberal Geoff Regan

Now, as we all look forward to every year, the hon. member for Cape Breton—Canso.

Leadership RacesStatements By Members

2:20 p.m.

Liberal

Rodger Cuzner Liberal Cape Breton—Canso, NS

Manage your expectations, Mr. Speaker.

'Twas the week before Christmas and one thing's for certain;
Both Opposition Parties were definitely hurtin'.
In their letter to Santa, they each had one ask;
To find a new leader, who was up to the task.
The orange leader looked beaten, a force that was spent;
When all he could muster was 47%.
The Dippers they're nervous, cuz they tried and they tried;
They posted the job, but no one applied.
They may turn to the Internet, to help fill their wish;
And place a help wanted ad, on “Plenty of Fish”.
Now the Tories have 14, with credentials to tout;
And their values-based screening, knocked none of them out.
They've gone coast to coast, speaking right from the stump;
It's evolved to a game of out Donalding Trump.
Of course the word on the street, wthout Peter MacKay;
They hope the interim leader, chooses to stay.
But with their win down south, the far right have a theory;
The heck with them all, let's draft Kevin O'Leary.
To all candidates I offer, Christmas love, peace and joy;
But when it comes to the next election, I'd still bet on our boy.

TaxationOral Questions

2:20 p.m.

Sturgeon River—Parkland Alberta

Conservative

Rona Ambrose ConservativeLeader of the Opposition

Mr. Speaker, the end of the session is a good time to point out that the government turned its back on Canadian families. For example, it did away with tax credits for sports, the arts, and textbooks for children. What is more, it increased taxes for families and small businesses.

When will the Prime Minister stop working for his Liberal friends and start working for Canadians?

TaxationOral Questions

2:20 p.m.

Toronto Centre Ontario

Liberal

Bill Morneau LiberalMinister of Finance

Mr. Speaker, we have already started. The first thing we did was cut taxes for the middle class. That was very important for Canadians across the country. However, even more important was the Canada child benefit. It helps nine out of ten families, who now have more money in their pockets every month for their family. This was a very good year, and we hope for even better and that the next 16 years will be very good.

EthicsOral Questions

2:25 p.m.

Sturgeon River—Parkland Alberta

Conservative

Rona Ambrose ConservativeLeader of the Opposition

Mr. Speaker, nothing says “middle class” like a ticket to an exclusive Liberal Party fundraiser. Just imagine the middle-class problems the Liberals try to solve over champagne and caviar. Let us not forget the Chinese billionaires.

The people the Prime Minister is hanging out with are not middle-class people, and he is not there to solve middle-class problems. When is the Prime Minister going to stop spending his time with the out of touch elite and focus on the out of work Canadians?

EthicsOral Questions

2:25 p.m.

Waterloo Ontario

Liberal

Bardish Chagger LiberalLeader of the Government in the House of Commons and Minister of Small Business and Tourism

Mr. Speaker, the Prime Minister and the government are working for middle-class Canadians and those working hard to join them. Those are the very people for whom we will continue to work.

That is why we reduced taxes on middle-class Canadians. That is why we supported families with children that need it the most. We will continue to invest in families in Canadian communities so we can do the good work Canadians expect us to do.

EthicsOral Questions

2:25 p.m.

Sturgeon River—Parkland Alberta

Conservative

Rona Ambrose ConservativeLeader of the Opposition

Mr. Speaker, let us compare the middle class to the Prime Minister's cash for access donors.

Middle-class folks are concerned with getting their mortgage approved. Billionaires at his cash for access events are lobbying to get their bank approved. Middle-class families are anxious about how to pay for their grandma's health care. Billionaires at these cash for access events are trying to buy seniors' homes.

These are not middle-class families with middle-class problems, so when is the Prime Minister going to admit he is selling out the middle class to his billionaire friends?

EthicsOral Questions

2:25 p.m.

Waterloo Ontario

Liberal

Bardish Chagger LiberalLeader of the Government in the House of Commons and Minister of Small Business and Tourism

Mr. Speaker, as I have said, the Prime Minister and the government are committed to working for middle-class Canadians and those working hard to join them. We will continue to work hard for Canadian families with children through the tax-free Canada child benefit so the families that need it the most will get the most so they can provide and support their families in the way they choose.

I will repeat that the Chief Electoral Office, in regard to ticketed fundraising events, has confirmed that every party fundraises and every campaign does them.