Crucial Fact

  • His favourite word was offence.

Last in Parliament November 2005, as Liberal MP for Northumberland—Quinte West (Ontario)

Lost his last election, in 2008, with 29% of the vote.

Statements in the House

Parliamentary Reform May 10th, 2001

Mr. Speaker, there has been a lot of media coverage on parliamentary reform over the last few days.

Could the government House leader tell us what steps the government is taking to make the House of Commons an even better institution for Canadians?

Natural Science And Engineering Research Council May 7th, 2001

Mr. Speaker, last Thursday the Secretary of State for Science, Research and Development announced an investment of $21.7 million toward the Natural Science and Engineering Research Council of Canada, NSERC.

This money will create three new research networks in environmental studies. These programs will help to make Canada a leader in the field.

NSERC supports research that will provide Canadians with the knowledge and skills to help Canada flourish in the 21st century. We wish the best to each of the over 300 researchers, graduate students and post-doctoral fellows who will be funded through this investment.

Petitions May 1st, 2001

Madam Speaker, it is a pleasure to present a duly certified petition to the House today. The petitioners are from three high schools in the Cobourg area who showed their interest in the recent trade agreement negotiations. The high schools are St. Mary's, CDCI West and CDCI East.

The more than 600 petitioners are concerned about the manner in which the agreement is being negotiated. They call upon parliament to consult Canadians before entering into that agreement so the environmental, social and cultural consequences can be considered.

The Environment March 12th, 2001

Mr. Speaker, road salt has been in the news a great deal lately both because of concern over its use and its impact on the environment.

Could the Minister of the Environment tell the House what he is doing to protect the safety of Canadians on our nation's roadways while furthering the protection of the environment?

Northumberland March 1st, 2001

Mr. Speaker, it is a fact that rural communities face many challenges in obtaining and utilizing technology. In this light, on January 9 of this year I launched my first major initiative as the member of parliament for Northumberland, that being the creation of a research, innovation and technology advisory committee.

This committee is developing a vision of Northumberland, where communities can work together to ensure that our children can find a prosperous future without having to leave their community.

I wish to commend the talented members of the research, innovation and technology advisory committee for their hard work and dedication. I look forward to working with that committee to achieve that vision of a brighter and innovative future for many generations to come.

International Development February 2nd, 2001

Mr. Speaker, as next week is International Development Week, it is an honour for me to praise the work of Horizons of Friendship, a non-profit agency in my riding.

Horizons of Friendship is a Canadian non-profit international development agency committed to addressing the root causes of poverty and injustice. It supports central American and Mexican organizations that undertake local initiatives which further this goal. In Canada, it raises awareness on global issues and works with Canadian organizations at the local and national levels to bring about positive and lasting change.

I would like to extend my sincere thanks to Horizons of Friendship for being such an active part of the community of Northumberland and for the life saving support that they provide to so many, especially now as they work to help the victims of the recent earthquake in El Salvador.

Speech From The Throne January 30th, 2001

Mr. Speaker, it is with a great sense of pride and humility that I move the motion on the Address in Reply to the Speech from the Throne.

I would like to pay my humble respects to Her Excellency the Governor General and thank Her Excellency for delivering the speech today.

As well, I would like to thank the Right Hon. Prime Minister for bestowing this honour upon me and the riding of Northumberland to bring forward the motion on the Address in Reply to the Speech from the Throne.

I would like to thank the people of Northumberland who have placed their trust and confidence in me to represent their interests in the House. As their member, I vow to work in conjunction with my colleagues to address the concerns and challenges that we face today and in the future.

To my predecessor, the hon. Christine Stewart, I extend my personal regards for her 12 years of dedicated service to her riding, to her colleagues and to her nation. She has been an inspiration to all of us. On behalf of my colleagues I thank her for giving so much to so many.

I would like to thank my family who are with me today for their endless motivation, inspiration and support. I am reminded of the importance of family and it is a value I cherish. Today's speech has demonstrated the commitment of the government to support families and children.

To you, Mr. Speaker, I extend my sincere congratulations on your election as Speaker of the House. You have earned the confidence and support of your colleagues to guide us through the many complex issues that face us.

Today, as I reflect on the history that surrounds this Chamber and the Fathers of Confederation, I am reminded of a lawyer who practised law for 15 years in the riding of Northumberland, who bore the name James Cockburn. On November 6, 1867, he was unanimously chosen as the first Speaker of the House. Indeed Northumberland has strong roots within Confederation and to the Speaker's chair.

It is a privilege to say that I hail from one of the best ridings in the country. Northumberland is a picturesque riding, with vast rolling land and freshwater lakes to the north and south borders. Along the east and west borders of Northumberland we have the Trent Severn waterway and the Ganaraska River, both opening into Lake Ontario.

These bodies of water remind all of my constituents that fresh, clean water is something to be cherished and enjoyed. This is part of the positive quality of life experienced in Northumberland and it needs to be preserved so it may be shared with others.

Canada, as a country with one of the largest masses of fresh water in the world, needs to continue to demonstrate its commitment to the environment and to protect this great natural resource. Fresh water is our future.

In my riding we rely heavily upon natural resources to ensure the success of one of our largest industries, and that is agriculture. I know firsthand the farming way of life because I come from five generations of farmers. I am proud to say that my great great-grandfather introduced the first Holstein cattle into Northumberland in 1884. Since then we have come a long way, yet there is much work to be done.

Our rural voices must continue to be strong in supporting our food supply system, for agriculture is not only a way of life in my riding, it is a way of life for so many across this great nation of ours.

We cannot stand by and allow the family farm to die. We must as a government provide support for the farming community in their time of need.

I am very pleased to see today that our government has pledged to work with the agricultural community to move beyond crisis management, to support them in their time of need and to ensure that family farms that helped build our nation prosper once again.

As a member of this House and a representative of the people of Northumberland, I have pledged to bring forward the concerns of my constituents on the issue of agriculture. It is important that we continue to support the family farm, which has been a cornerstone of our Canadian heritage.

I am very optimistic when envisioning our future. In today's knowledge based economy, innovation and creative thinking are the currency of success. Our government is investing in today's pioneers because they are the architects of our future.

By such investment in knowledge and innovation, we are laying down a strong foundation for a stronger nation. The building blocks of our foundation are found in our youth and to make them strong requires education and opportunity.

With the introduction of programs, such as the Canadian opportunities strategy, the Canadian government is opening more doors to post-secondary education than ever before. The Canadian millennium scholarships are the centre of this strategy and will provide more than 100,000 scholarships to low and middle income students for the next 10 years.

As a government, we are strengthening the institutions where learning and research take place. Canadian universities and laboratories will benefit from programs, such as the Canada foundation for innovation and the networks of centres of excellence, as a means of expanding future opportunities through education.

Locally in my riding, I have taken the initiative to integrate technology, research and innovation through the municipal, provincial and federal governments. I have launched a research, innovation and technology advisory committee to establish seamless connections between all levels of government and all aspects of our community. By bringing together these key groups my constituents have the opportunity to work together to shape the vision of our future as a riding.

Today's throne speech exemplifies the commitment by the government to Canadians young and old.

We have once again demonstrated our ability as a government to respond to the needs of Canadians while maintaining fiscal responsibility. The speech not only affirms Canada's position at the forefront of a knowledge based economy, but it stresses that concerns about health care and early childhood development shall be answered by the government.

We have demonstrated time and time again that we are a government that supports all those in our society while looking after the fiscal needs of our country. As a government we continue to reflect the Liberal values on which we were elected.

We are a growing country, a country of which to be proud. We are a nation that has again been named the best country in the world in which to live. We are a country where people are recognized for their cultural diversity, varying interests and are motivated toward keeping Canada the best country in the world in which to live.

In conclusion, I would like to remind all hon. members of the House, regardless of our party loyalties, that Canadians from coast to coast have spoken. We have been chosen to hear their voices, address their concerns and instil confidence in them that we are fighting the same battle, the battle to make Canada the very best.

I extend to you, Mr. Speaker, and all members of the House my best wishes. I am certain that this parliament will stand as the best in history. Let us leave our legacy now to drive the future.

I hereby move, seconded by the hon. member for Laval East, that the following address be presented to Her Excellency the Governor General of Canada:

To Her Excellency the Right Honourable Adrienne Clarkson, a Member of the Queen's Privy Council for Canada, Chancellor and Principal Companion of the Order of Canada, Chancellor and Commander of the Order of Military Merit, Governor General and Commander-in-Chief of Canada.

May it please Your Excellency:

We, Her Majesty's most loyal and dutiful subjects, the House of Commons of Canada, in parliament assembled, beg leave to offer our humble thanks to Your Excellency for the gracious Speech which Your Excellency has addressed to both Houses of Parliament.