House of Commons Hansard #339 of the 42nd Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was post.


The EnvironmentAdjournment Proceedings

6:25 p.m.


Elizabeth May Green Saanich—Gulf Islands, BC

Mr. Speaker, in response to the parliamentary secretary, I will point out that there is no oceans protection plan. There is an oceans protection wish list, but I have not seen a plan. The $1.5 billion has been announced, and we do not know how much of it will be given per coast, much less how it is actually going to be spent.

I will point out that consultations with first nations are rendered far less credible when the government continues to insist that the pipeline must be built.

With my remaining 30 seconds, I will ask the parliamentary secretary this. Please present to the House of Commons a cost-benefit analysis of building a $10-billion expansion. Compare the number of jobs that would be created by that effort, which according to Kinder Morgan would amount to 90 permanent jobs, with the jobs that would be created if we were to refine and upgrade the bitumen in Alberta and use it within Canada. Please explain how buying and building new pipelines is possibly consistent with our Paris commitments.

The EnvironmentAdjournment Proceedings

6:30 p.m.

Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Natural Resources, Lib.

Paul Lefebvre

Mr. Speaker, I feel compelled to repeat that the Trans Mountain expansion project is an investment in Canada's future. That is why our government remains confident about this project and determined to see the work move forward the right way. That is what we are doing, step by step, by using a balanced approach in this century of clean growth, an approach that recognizes that the economy and the environment go hand in hand.

The Minister of Natural Resources has established a way forward that represents not just the right thing to do, but also the smart thing to do.

JusticeAdjournment Proceedings

October 22nd, 2018 / 6:30 p.m.


James Bezan Conservative Selkirk—Interlake—Eastman, MB

Mr. Speaker, I am pleased to rise tonight on a question I raised just last week when I asked the Prime Minister directly about the Vice-Admiral Norman case, and how on that Wednesday before, the Prime Minister refused 24 times to answer any questions about providing to the judicial system the information that is required from cabinet.

We also want to know how many times the President of the Treasury Board met with Irving. It was quite shocking that, of course, again, there were no answers from the government, but the President of the Treasury Board met 16 times with Irving. Those are the publicly disclosed meetings. It does not say anything about how many text messages, emails, or instant messages there have been. We do not know how many unreported meetings have taken place between the President of the Treasury Board and Irving shipyard.

We need to keep in mind that we are not asking the government to violate the rules of jurisprudence. We want to make sure that Vice-Admiral Norman is given a fair trial. He needs all the information that has been requested by his defence team. Of course, the government is hiding behind the excuse of cabinet confidences.

That privilege of hiding information and documents as cabinet confidences can be waived by cabinet itself, and it has been done in the past. When Paul Martin was prime minister, he waived the privilege of cabinet confidence and turned over all documents relating to the ad scam.

I am sure the parliamentary secretary is going to stand and say that we cannot be discussing this because of the rules of the House. Well, first of all, Mr. Speaker, the rules of the House are determined by you on whether or not questions are in order. It is not the parliamentary secretary's job to make those determinations. It is your job.

We are not talking about the case. We are talking about the documents that the government is sitting on, and making sure they are handed over to the defence team so that Vice-Admiral Mark Norman can have a fair trial. I am not asking the government to pronounce itself on whether it believes in the guilt or the innocence of Mark Norman, but that did not stop the Prime Minister from publicly musing on two different occasions on whether or not Vice-Admiral Mark Norman would end up in court after he was suspended on the issue of the leaked documents.

We know that there has been a charge brought before the courts of breach of trust against Vice-Admiral Mark Norman, but that still does not excuse the government from not respecting his right to a fair trial. He has the charter right to ensure that he has due process. All we are asking of the government is to provide those documents.

As I said in question period earlier today, there are other issues surrounding this case that may be addressed which the government has been involved in, and I will address that in my rebuttal after the parliamentary secretary has a chance to respond. However, there is critical information that the government is sitting on, and we need to know who the government is trying to protect and what the government is trying to cover up.

The Liberal government ran on the issue of being transparent. We are getting anything but that. There is a stonewall going on here and definitely a cover-up.

JusticeAdjournment Proceedings

6:35 p.m.

Karen McCrimmon Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness, Lib.

Mr. Speaker, the answer is going to remain the same.

As members may know, there is a legal rule and a rule of convention called the sub judice rule, which restrains parliamentarians on statements made about ongoing legal proceedings, especially criminal cases before the courts. This rule is part of a law relating to contempt of court and also a convention recognized by the House. Members are expected to refrain from discussing matters that are before the courts or tribunals, which are courts of record.

The purpose of this sub judice convention is to protect the parties in a case awaiting or undergoing trial and persons who stand to be affected by the outcome of a judicial inquiry. It is a restraint imposed by the House upon itself in the interest of justice and fair play.

As the Supreme Court of Canada has stated, “It is a wise principle that the courts and Parliament strive to respect each other's role in the conduct of public affairs.” Parliament, for its part, refrains from commenting on matters before the courts, under the sub judice rule.

The sub judice rule may be breached by public statements that risk prejudging matters or issues that are before the courts. A breach of this rule can include, for instance, statements urging the court to reach a particular result in a matter, comments on the strength or weakness of a party's case or a particular issue or comments on witnesses or evidence in a case.

Respect for the work of our courts and the judiciary means that we do not attempt to prosecute a legal proceeding on the floor of the House of Commons.

JusticeAdjournment Proceedings

6:35 p.m.


James Bezan Conservative Selkirk—Interlake—Eastman, MB

Mr. Speaker, it is unfortunate that the parliamentary secretary is taking that position. She should be encouraging her government to release these documents. She was a proud member of the Canadian Armed Forces. She is a veteran who served this country honourably.

Vice-Admiral Mark Norman has served with distinction. He is an honourable man, and he has been an amazing leader to the Canadian Armed Forces.

We know that two people have been granted immunity in the Vice-Admiral Norman case. One of those persons is a lobbyist and the other is an executive with Davey Shipyards. Neither one of those are James Cudmore, who the defence minister has hired and put on his staff.

I want to know who is paying? Are the Liberals paying for James Cudmore's lawyer, yes or no?

JusticeAdjournment Proceedings

6:35 p.m.

Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness, Lib.

Karen McCrimmon

Mr. Speaker, it would be inappropriate for me to comment or speculate on any matter on an ongoing criminal trial. The member knows that committee studies and multiple Speakers' rulings have found that the House should abide by the sub judice convention.

As per the House of Commons Compendium of Procedure, “Members are expected to refrain from discussing matters actively before the courts or under judicial consideration in order to guard those involved in a court action or judicial inquiry from any undue influence.”

JusticeAdjournment Proceedings

6:35 p.m.


The Assistant Deputy Speaker Liberal Anthony Rota

The motion to adjourn the House is now deemed to have been adopted. Accordingly, the House stands adjourned until tomorrow at 10 a.m., pursuant to Standing Order 24(1).

(The House adjourned at 6:39 p.m.)