House of Commons Hansard #242 of the 42nd Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was consultants.

Topics

EthicsOral Questions

2:20 p.m.

Liberal

Justin Trudeau Liberal Papineau, QC

Mr. Speaker, the finance minister has delivered, time and time again, for Canadians and for Canada.

The members opposite cannot attack on the substance, on the impact, the positive impact of everything that the government and the finance minister have done, and, therefore, they resort not to substance but to slander.

EthicsOral Questions

2:20 p.m.

Conservative

Pierre Poilievre Conservative Carleton, ON

Mr. Speaker, I quote again, David Akin:

In its analysis of trading activity by all Morneau Sheppell insiders, Global News has found that Morneau Sr. is the only insider to have significant activity in the days before the finance minister’s tax announcement.

It turns out the minister's father sold $1.5 million worth of shares just four days before the tax announcement that dropped Morneau Shepell share prices. Is that just a coincidence?

EthicsOral Questions

2:20 p.m.

Papineau Québec

Liberal

Justin Trudeau LiberalPrime Minister

Mr. Speaker, again, an easy rule of thumb for Canadians watching the goings-on in this House of Commons is to see whether or not the allegations made inside this House are repeated outside this House. As the Conservative House leader herself said last night, they do not want to get sued.

The fact is the member opposite said things on Monday that he is very careful not to repeat outside this House. That is demonstration that this is nothing but a slanderous smear job.

EthicsOral Questions

2:20 p.m.

Conservative

Alain Rayes Conservative Richmond—Arthabaska, QC

Mr. Speaker, all week, we have been asking the Prime Minister and the Minister of Finance a very simple question: who sold the 680,000 Morneau Shepell shares one week before the implementation of tax measures that affected the company? That enabled this person to save thousands of dollars.

Funnily enough, Global News reported today that another individual close to the Minister of Finance apparently sold 200,000 shares. We are talking about the finance minister's father. Either he is very lucky, or very well informed.

What is the Prime Minister waiting for to fire his minister—

EthicsOral Questions

2:20 p.m.

Liberal

The Speaker Liberal Geoff Regan

Order. The Right Hon. Prime Minister.

EthicsOral Questions

2:20 p.m.

Papineau Québec

Liberal

Justin Trudeau LiberalPrime Minister

Mr. Speaker, it seems that once again the Conservatives have gotten themselves into a real pickle. The Conservative members are unable to repeat outside the House what they are saying now and what they said Monday here in this place, because here they are protected by parliamentary privilege.

Canadians can clearly see that the Conservatives are making unfounded personal attacks only because they are unable to criticize our outstanding economic track record and performance

EthicsOral Questions

2:20 p.m.

Conservative

Alain Rayes Conservative Richmond—Arthabaska, QC

Mr. Speaker, I challenge the Prime Minister and the Minister of Finance to answer the very simple little question they were asked: who sold the shares?

Canadians have the right to an honest, responsible finance minister who takes his responsibilities seriously. Right now, we have a finance minister who is not above suspicion and who is not leading by example.

The countdown has begun. It is not a question of if, but rather when, the Minister of Finance will be replaced. When will the Prime Minister act responsibly and do the right thing, which is to fire the Minister of Finance?

EthicsOral Questions

2:20 p.m.

Papineau Québec

Liberal

Justin Trudeau LiberalPrime Minister

Mr. Speaker, I feel pretty bad for the opposition because we have had the strongest growth rate in the G7 for the past two years and because we are helping middle-class Canadians and those working hard to join it with the Canada child benefit, tax cuts for the middle class, tax hikes for the wealthy, and a small business tax rate that dropped to 9%. The members opposite have nothing they can attack us on, so they choose to make dirty, personal attacks, which are unfounded, since they will not repeat them outside this place.

EthicsOral Questions

2:25 p.m.

NDP

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

Mr. Speaker, I feel bad for the Prime Minister. We know that the Minister of Finance sold 680,000 Morneau Shepell shares. He told us so. That is not the question we are asking in this House. The question we are asking is this: did he sell them on November 30, 2015, a week before introducing tax measures here in the House? He could deny it. He had several opportunities to deny it, and he did not. If he refuses to set the record straight in the House, why does the Prime Minister not demand he do so right now?

EthicsOral Questions

2:25 p.m.

Papineau Québec

Liberal

Justin Trudeau LiberalPrime Minister

Mr. Speaker, the NDP was the official opposition while the Conservative government had poor economic growth numbers and was not helping Canadians in need. For the past two years now, we have been fulfilling our commitments to Canadians in need, helping the middle class and those working hard to join it, and helping community organizations and small businesses. As a result, all they can do is follow the Conservatives' lead by making unfounded personal attacks.

EthicsOral Questions

2:25 p.m.

NDP

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

Mr. Speaker, the lack of respect by the Prime Minister for the House is astounding.

Perception is everything, especially when we are talking about things like conflicts of interest. The fact is that the finance minister refusing to even deny that he sold those shares on that day looks bad. The fact that he refuses to clarify his father's transactions in the House looks bad. Can the minister or the Prime Minister do the right thing, stop obfuscating, and clear the air in the House?

EthicsOral Questions

2:25 p.m.

Papineau Québec

Liberal

Justin Trudeau LiberalPrime Minister

Mr. Speaker, we have been answering these questions for a number of weeks, but the fact that we have been responding to this at all is because members opposite find themselves in the difficult situation of not having much else or much of anything to attack us on. This is why they have to invent these unfounded, baseless allegations, that not one of them, from either party, will repeat outside of this House, because to quote the opposition House leader, they do not want to “get sued”.

EthicsOral Questions

2:25 p.m.

NDP

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

Mr. Speaker, it is only for the Prime Minister that asking questions which he does not answer represents mud-slinging.

First, the finance minister refuses to even acknowledge a conflict of interest when he tabled a bill that would benefit the firm he was working for. Then he consistently refuses to answer the simple question of when he sold those shares in Morneau Shepell. Then he refuses to clear the air about his father's transaction.

I would like to know when he will understand that the only way for him to get out of this mess is to answer and give the truth right now in the House to Canadians.

EthicsOral Questions

November 30th, 2017 / 2:25 p.m.

Papineau Québec

Liberal

Justin Trudeau LiberalPrime Minister

Mr. Speaker, the truth is we have the strongest economy in the G7 right now with the fastest growth. We have demonstrated that we are helping the middle class with the Canada child benefit and lowering taxes, which is the hard work that the finance minister has been doing.

Members opposite have so little to attack us on substance that they have to switch to slander, which is why they are not saying any of these allegations outside of this House, because they do not want to get sued. I do not blame them. One gets sued when one does not tell the truth.

EthicsOral Questions

2:25 p.m.

Some hon. members

Oh, oh!

EthicsOral Questions

2:25 p.m.

Liberal

The Speaker Liberal Geoff Regan

Order. All members tell the truth, and I ask members not to suggest otherwise.

The hon. member for Rimouski-Neigette—Témiscouata—Les Basques.

EthicsOral Questions

2:25 p.m.

NDP

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

Mr. Speaker, there is jumping the shark, and there is jumping the Paul Calandra, and the Prime Minister has done it.

The Minister of Finance refuses to face the truth, namely that he is in trouble up to his eyeballs.

The minister could have avoided this whole mess by putting his assets in a blind trust from the get-go. As he said, he did not. He could have avoided this mess by stating in this House that he was not the one who sold his shares on November 30, 2015, but he did not say so. He could have avoided this mess by explaining to the House the incredible coincidence of the sale of his father's shares in Morneau Shepell, but he did not.

When will the Minister of Finance realize that the only way out of this mess is to tell the truth here and now?

EthicsOral Questions

2:30 p.m.

Papineau Québec

Liberal

Justin Trudeau LiberalPrime Minister

Mr. Speaker, again, it is sad to see hon. members of the House making unfounded personal attacks. The members opposite have nothing else to criticize about a finance minister who has not only our trust, but also that of Canadians, because he is delivering on what we promised to the middle class and those working hard to join it. We are creating economic growth that is the envy of the rest of the G7. We are keeping the promises we made to Canadians and will continue to do so.

EthicsOral Questions

2:30 p.m.

Conservative

Mark Strahl Conservative Chilliwack—Hope, BC

Mr. Speaker, the finance minister and the Prime Minister keep threatening MPs, telling them to go outside. Outside of this House, they have been given every advantage. They have family fortunes. I do not have a family fortune. They have teams of high-priced Bay Street lawyers. I do not have a fancy lawyer, but what I do have is a seat in the House of Commons, and whether they like it or not, in here we are equals, and I have the right to ask them questions, no matter how much more money they have than I do. Why do they not stop threatening members of Parliament and just answer the questions?

EthicsOral Questions

2:30 p.m.

Some hon. members

Oh, oh!

EthicsOral Questions

2:30 p.m.

Liberal

The Speaker Liberal Geoff Regan

Order. I would remind members that each side gets to have its turn, and there are more turns coming ahead. I would ask the hon. member for Dauphin—Swan River—Neepawa not to be heckling, particularly when I am trying to ask members not to heckle.

The hon. Minister of Finance.

EthicsOral Questions

2:30 p.m.

Toronto Centre Ontario

Liberal

Bill Morneau LiberalMinister of Finance

Mr. Speaker, there are no secrets here. What has clearly been the case is that I have reported all of my assets. The sale of my shares, which I made when I came into office, has been reported in the newspapers. I presume the members of the opposition can read.

What we are talking about is the fact that I moved forward to sell some shares, and what we did is we then moved forward to make sure that we were following every one of the rules of the Ethics Commissioner. I will continue to work with her. I am disappointed that the House has gotten to this low level of discourse, but I will continue--

EthicsOral Questions

2:30 p.m.

Liberal

The Speaker Liberal Geoff Regan

The hon. member for Chilliwack—Hope.

EthicsOral Questions

2:30 p.m.

Conservative

Mark Strahl Conservative Chilliwack—Hope, BC

Mr. Speaker, the finance minister has obviously gone his whole life without having anyone have the audacity to question him. Whenever he has had any problems, his money and his big city lawyers made them go away, and now he is threatening to use his family fortune once again to threaten members of Parliament who are asking him legitimate questions. If he cannot answer the simple question of when he sold his 680,000 Morneau Shepell shares, why does he not just do the right thing and resign?

EthicsOral Questions

2:30 p.m.

Toronto Centre Ontario

Liberal

Bill Morneau LiberalMinister of Finance

Mr. Speaker, I absolutely said that I sold some shares. That happened--