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Crucial Fact

  • His favourite word was billion.

Last in Parliament March 2008, as Liberal MP for Willowdale (Ontario)

Won his last election, in 2006, with 55% of the vote.

Statements in the House

Len Hopkins February 7th, 2007

Mr. Speaker, it is my sad duty to mark the death of Len Hopkins, Liberal member of Parliament.

Len represented his people from 1965 to 1997, an incredible 32 years and nine victories as the undefeated political champion of the Ottawa Valley. He worked unstintingly for his people, saying, “Once you hang your shingle out, you're like the old time country doctor, on duty seven days a week, 365 days a year”.

Len was best known for his strong support for Canada's military and for championing CFB Petawawa. He was AECL's undisputed champion and was ahead of his time in pushing for renewable energy such as biomass.

In retirement he led the charge to have the Ottawa River designated a Canadian heritage river. We will continue this fight in his name.

Asked about his legacy, Len said, “I would like to think I left some decency in the political system”, and indeed he did, and what a difference he made for his constituents, for Canadians and for all of us.

I ask members to join me in giving thanks for Len Hopkins and condolences to his wonderful wife Lois and all members of the Hopkins family.

Lucille Broadbent November 28th, 2006

Mr. Speaker, it is my sad but great privilege to rise in the House today to pay tribute, on behalf of my party, to Lucille Broadbent.

We who serve in this place understand the great sacrifices paid by our families in the name of that service. Few made that sacrifice more profoundly or more gracefully than the wife of Ed Broadbent. We who sit in the House of Commons are able to do so because of the people who stand behind us, who support us with their wisdom, their help, their patience and their love.

Those of us, who were so privileged to work with Ed Broadbent in the House and who saw his outstanding leadership here and on the national stage and the global stage, know that Lucille was always with him in every way.

The memory of Lucille Broadbent remains with us. We remember her and honour her for all that she was and for all that she gave.

The Québécois November 24th, 2006

Mr. Speaker, with regard to the motion before the House, that represents all Canadians, concerning the future of Quebec and its place within Canada, I am very grateful—as are all my colleagues—to the Bloc for having recognized the important role of all Canadians in the future of Quebec.

Budget Implementation Act, 2006, No. 2 October 27th, 2006

Mr. Speaker, the hon. member will recall that our then minister of industry, now the Minister of International Trade, had undertaken extensive consultations with the various regions in this country in order to develop a shipbuilding policy, one that would actually work.

The number of ships built in this country over the last decade or so has dwindled and declined. If Canada is to have a viable shipbuilding industry, it has to work with all the stakeholders in order to achieve the types of targets and the concentrated efforts that we want.

The Liberal government was working on that very actively when the election was called. I hope that the minister who was so active then is still carrying on the same type of consultations. I fully expect the government to bring forth that shipbuilding policy at an early moment.

Budget Implementation Act, 2006, No. 2 October 27th, 2006

I apologize, Mr. Speaker. Thank you very much.

Mr. Speaker, that party on the other side is now the government. It is up to it to bring forward its agenda and how it wants to deal with the very issues that we are talking about. Let us ensure that the government is held accountable for what it has not done.

Budget Implementation Act, 2006, No. 2 October 27th, 2006

And I am going to respond with a question. You are the government--

Budget Implementation Act, 2006, No. 2 October 27th, 2006

Mr. Speaker, perhaps I could ask the hon. member--

Budget Implementation Act, 2006, No. 2 October 27th, 2006

Mr. Speaker, the Liberals are not afraid of dealing with the issues of children in our society. The most important thing that we can do to help children is to give them a good start in life.

In terms of getting tough on child pornographers and child abuse, absolutely. The most important thing for our children is that they have a good start in life, that they have the health care and the education that they need.

This is why the Liberal government brought in the child care program of $5 billion in order to partner with groups right across this country, so that there would be a good start for these young people. We want them to have the proper training, the proper values, and the proper care that they need when they have working parents. That is how--

Budget Implementation Act, 2006, No. 2 October 27th, 2006

Mr. Speaker, when I was speaking yesterday, I was talking about how cynical, how divisive, and how doctrinaire the government has been in bringing forth wedge issues that are not based on good public policy, but politics at its worst.

I talked about GST cuts at the expense of personal income taxes, which were actually raised. I talked about a baby bonus of only $100 a month instead of real child care spaces. I talked about cancellation of the historic Kelowna accord with our first nations. I talked about how the government has rejected the Kyoto protocol and not even given us any short term or medium term goals for climate change. Instead, it has given us transit passes which will not increase ridership, but will only help those who are already using public transit.

Let me go on. A fifth area where this cynical government has misled us in bad policy is our cities. It cancelled our programs for needed municipal infrastructure. Sixth, on agriculture, it wants to do away with the Wheat Board without even giving farmers a full voice. In terms of justice, it has a let us get tough on crime mantra, but without doing anything to the real causes of crime in our country.

The Conservatives talked about the fiscal imbalance. They ran on that program, and they were going to do something about it. We have not seen one word about what they will do about it. They ran on a program that would reduce wait times in our hospitals. It was one of their five major planks. What have we seen? Absolutely nothing.

In terms of charter rights, they want to set this country back into the dark ages by ignoring the charter rights of those who are most vulnerable in our society. They want to revisit the very divisive wedge issue of the rights of people who are minorities in our society and have been accorded the right to marry by the Supreme Court of Canada. They are so cynical they will not even bring in the notwithstanding clause, which is the only way to undo what the court has said is a minority right in our country.

In terms of facing the great challenges of the new emerging economies of the world, what did the Conservatives do about China and India? They cancelled our $470 million, over five years, CAN-Trade program to put more people in place in those countries to help Canadians meet the challenges and opportunities of these new emerging markets, and to help small businesses form the partnerships and the alliances that they need in order to be competitive in our new global economy.

Last, what have the Conservatives done? We saw it lately. Who did they sock it to? Who did they cut the funds from? Seniors, adults who are illiterate, museums, and our court challenges program, which has been the basis on which many people have been able to assert their legal rights, their charter rights. They cut the Law Commission and they socked it to women's equality rights.

This is not the type of government that Canadians want. Canadians know that good policies are good politics. They will not stand for the government and that is why the government is falling so quickly in the polls. Canadians have seen its true colours. We will not stand for this. Let us get away from the cynicism and the small mindedness of the government, and let us govern for all Canadians.

Budget Implementation Act, 2006, No. 2 October 26th, 2006

And that is taxed back. What does that do to help people put their kids in quality child care? Nothing. That is why every child care expert in this country has condemned the stupid politics of the Conservative government trying to pander to everybody but doing no good for any of them.

What did the Conservatives do with Kelowna? It was a historic accord reached by our government with the provinces, the territories and the leadership of all our aboriginal communities. It was historic to allow that community to develop, to grow and to have the standard of living that it is going to need. Today many of our aboriginal peoples live in such shameful conditions that we cannot hold our heads high in this country. We had to do something about our first peoples, and what did the Conservatives do? They cancelled the Kelowna accord.

Let us look at the environment. What is the single biggest problem faced by us globally according to all of the ecologists, all of the environmentalists, all of the experts? It is global warming. What has the government done with global warming? It has said that within 45 years it will reduce emissions by 45% to 65%. Does any action have to be taken today? No, it is going to continue to consult, continue to consider what measures should be taken.

We do not deal with the crisis of global warming by renouncing Kyoto. We do not deal with it by not bringing in targets. This thing has been studied to death. We know what has been accomplished in other countries in the world, in Europe.

I am not saying our record was great in Canada, but we at least had in place a program for dealing with meeting the Kyoto targets by 2012. Even our biggest detractor, the Fraser Institute, said that our green program would have gone at least 80% of the way toward meeting those Kyoto targets. The Tories have not put in place anything to start dealing immediately with greenhouse gas emissions.

Global warming is taking place at an incredible rate, 30 times what it was 20 years ago. We see the melting of the ice cap. We see the disintegration of the Larsen B Ice Shelf in the Antarctic. This is serious. There is enough ice in the Arctic ice cap and in the Antarctic--