House of Commons photo

Crucial Fact

  • Her favourite word was colleague.

Last in Parliament September 2008, as Independent MP for Rimouski-Neigette—Témiscouata—Les Basques (Québec)

Lost her last election, in 2008, with 5% of the vote.

Statements in the House

Price of Petroleum Products May 26th, 2008

Mr. Speaker, I had to leave for a few moments, but I did hear my colleague's speech.

It always saddens me to see a member try that hard. I too heard what our New Democrat, Liberal and Bloc colleagues had to say. Our Conservative colleagues could let them have their say and give the people answers. They are the government, so that is their responsibility. They are responsible for redistributing wealth, and they are responsible for the common good.

People in the regions, particularly in my region, are very practical, so what kind of practical solutions can my colleague suggest for rural areas that are already struggling—people across Canada know what I am talking about—with crises in the agricultural and forestry sectors and with generalized price increases that are being aggravated by skyrocketing fuel costs?

What will the legitimately elected representatives who form the government do? That is the very question we should be asking ourselves, and that is the question I am asking the member.

Price of Petroleum Products May 26th, 2008

Mr. Speaker, I would first like to make an observation. I find it appalling when someone in this House simply reads a speech and does so in a great rush. I would like to come back to one of the points in the speech. I will be brief, because I want the Bloc Québécois member to have an opportunity to ask his question.

The hon. member went to the trouble of telling us what does not come under federal jurisdiction. Can we talk about what does come under federal jurisdiction? That includes crude oil, the refining margin, tax cuts for businesses granted by that member's government—and oil companies in particular are making huge profits as a result. Among its responsibilities, the federal government, since we can only talk about what concerns the federal government, must help us eliminate our oil dependency.

Talking about federal issues, can the member tell us what his government intends to do about those four issues concerning only the federal government, and not Quebec or the provinces?

Price of Petroleum Products May 26th, 2008

Mr. Speaker, I would like to ask my colleague from Mississauga—Erindale a question. He talked about the opposition party's new strategy, and I can understand that he hopes the Liberals will return to power.

I would like the member to tell us how this strategy will really reduce our dependence on oil.

Canadian Environmental Protection Act, 1999 May 26th, 2008

Mr. Speaker, I would ask my hon. colleague first what he thinks of the vocabulary used. Personally, I am somewhat flabbergasted that, from the beginning, we have been using the term “biofuel”—and its French equivalent—since it would seem to suggest that there is something good about using food, that we have the capacity to feed the population, to produce fuel, although we also know that biofuel itself is often highly polluting.

Of course, our colleague talked about the whole issue of research and production using residues left to us by nature. And that would appear much more responsible. However, at present, when we talk about making ethanol using corn ethanol, for example, we also know how much water is needed for that process. This really makes me think about oil sands production and processing, which I find truly irresponsible.

I would like to hear my colleague's comments. Rather than encouraging innovation and energy efficiency, it seems that this government has decided to focus on an irresponsible course of action, to encourage those forms of energy production that pollute the most and are most harmful, for example—as I mentioned—“thanks to” the oil sands and the production of grains that will ultimately be used as fuel, which I think is absurd.

Canadian Environmental Protection Act, 1999 May 26th, 2008

Mr. Speaker, I heard my colleague say that he agreed with the member opposite. That means he will not agree with me; I will tell him that right off the bat.

The cost of basic foods has gone up 48% since the end of 2006. I am not the one saying this. According to the director of the World Food Programme, a “silent tsunami” is threatening to plunge 100 million people into hunger. The IMF estimates that the use of biofuels and the rather considerable subsidies granted to producers account for 70% of the increase in corn prices.

What does the bill we are debating today do? It requires gasoline to contain 5% ethanol. Where is the logic in setting this requirement, when we consider the international assistance that needs to be provided, the fact that people should feed themselves, the fact that we should respect our environment, and the fact that this bill would require a 5% biofuel content?

In fact, I do not agree with this term. It could perhaps be called “agro” but it is far from being “bio”.

Beef Producers May 26th, 2008

Mr. Speaker, Canadian slaughterhouses are already starting to close. Our beef producers have to absorb the high cost of complying with regulations on specified risk material designed to meet high food safety standards, requiring that they get rid of tissue from all cattle slaughtered.

In the meantime, American producers are selling us their beef, which meets only 90% of our safety criteria, at one quarter the cost.

What is the government waiting for to ensure the survival of Canadian and Quebec beef producers without lowering the safety standards the public demands?

Committees of the House May 13th, 2008

Mr. Speaker, I listened carefully to the members' speeches. I also read the minutes and some of the witnesses' statements beforehand. I am very interested in this issue, as are many of us, I am sure.

I just want to take a few minutes to share my opinion. It is a shame that the committee did not study the amendments proposed by our colleague from Burnaby—Douglas. A committee is supposed to consider our colleagues' suggestions for improving the bills it is studying.

When that does not happen, I cannot, as a parliamentarian, feel anything other than disappointment, not only for the member who was able to express himself, but also for our colleague from Rosemont—La Petite-Patrie. I am disappointed because of what this means for all parliamentarians in this House who have the opportunity to submit a private member's bill or motion during a given session of Parliament.

As I said, studying the amendments proposed by the member for Burnaby—Douglas would probably have helped to save this bill, if I may say so. At least by studying them, we would have made an effort to save it.

I believe it is essential that we give private members' bills every opportunity to succeed, because introducing a bill gives a parliamentarian a chance to present something that we really care about, something our constituents really care about. It is important to introduce it, to speak in favour of it, to debate and discuss it, often, fortunately, with a greater degree of civility than what we are seeing here. This is essential, for without it, we would not have private members' bills.

I believe that this bill in particular deserved a better fate than the one that committee members condemned it to by refusing to study our NDP colleague's amendments. That makes me very sad, and I just wanted to share that with everyone.

Oil Imbalance May 12th, 2008

Mr. Speaker, regional economies are being hard hit by the rising dollar and higher gas prices, which are reducing export opportunities and increasing transportation and operating costs. People are paying for this economic imbalance.

The government has provided massive funding for oil sands development through the petroleum incentives program and has once again reduced taxes for the oil companies, which are making huge profits. However, it is refusing to take equity measures, saying that market forces will sort things out.

When will the regions affected by this oil imbalance get a fair shake?

Business of Supply May 7th, 2008

Mr. Speaker, I would like to say that I am very happy to hear that this motion will be supported by the Conservatives. This is about the democratic expression of our people. We are here, so we can give our opinions. We are here not only to speak, but also to follow through on our opinions and vote.

I would like to hear what the member for Roberval—Lac-Saint-Jean thinks about a topic he touched on, the CBC.

I have some serious concerns about the CBC in the regions, especially the fact that the Téléjournal de l'Est du Québec—I am sure my colleague is familiar with this—is entirely produced in Quebec City. We have the necessary equipment in Sept-Îles, Matane or Rimouski, but since 1993—if I am not mistaken—the show has been entirely produced in Quebec City, even though it dedicates short 20- or 30-second segments to regional content presented by our cameramen and journalists.

The CBC has a responsibility. All that we get are a few news stories on a half-hour evening radio show.

I would like to know what my colleague thinks about this, since he spoke about this issue. Should the CBC, a corporation financed by the people we represent, not get more involved in the regions? Is that not part of its mandate?

Business of Supply May 7th, 2008

Mr. Speaker, I do not know if my colleague from Honoré-Mercier had the opportunity to participate in the Conseil de presse du Québec hearings. These hearings were recently held across Quebec—the one in Rimouski took place during the past couple of weeks. The council told us that what was remarkable about these meetings was the consensus that emerged in the briefs and opinions presented by the public throughout the regions as to their regional needs. These people need local news, they need to see themselves reflected in that news and their stories told.

As the member said so well, these people need to see a reflection of who they are, and they obviously spoke about the impact of any deterioration in that regard.

Does my colleague from Honoré-Mercier have any comment on the impact of this deterioration, if we allow things like that to happen in terms of our very fragile communities, which I have to say, even if it hurts me to do so, are slowly dying, mainly in Quebec, but undoubtedly in other parts of Canada as well?