House of Commons photo

Crucial Fact

  • His favourite word was crime.

Last in Parliament January 2023, as Conservative MP for Oxford (Ontario)

Won his last election, in 2021, with 47% of the vote.

Statements in the House

Business of Supply February 19th, 2019

Madam Speaker, I think my colleague is absolutely right that there is so much in this whole picture that gets blurred. When the Liberals try to defend themselves, not defend SNC-Lavalin but defend themselves, they bring up the issue of jobs. I can tell members that there are people right out in front of this building who are here fighting for 100,000 jobs in western provinces.

We are also fighting for those jobs, and we are fighting for SNC-Lavalin jobs. These are good people. These are engineers and others with SNC-Lavalin. It is not their fault that they are in this position, but we should not throw them into the equation or throw them under the bus, as the Prime Minister has done with the former attorney general. We respect SNC-Lavalin employees. We know that they are good people. They do not all work in Quebec. Many of them work in Ontario and in other provinces.

Business of Supply February 19th, 2019

Madam Speaker, the member opposite raised so many issues. He is right that one of their members today sent out a tweet that she was going to bring forward a motion to allow the former attorney general to come to committee. Last week, they would not do that.

The other interesting part is that it is going to be at an in camera meeting today. No one is going to know what happened and whether she will be allowed to speak or not.

There is no question that I have faith in the Ethics Commissioner. I am not sure that what the Ethics Commissioner does will make Canadians feel any better, because so much of what he will do will also be behind closed doors.

I will tell members who I do have faith in: the RCMP and other police agencies. I have faith that if there is criminal activity here, they will get involved and investigate the criminal activity so that Canadians know exactly what happened.

Business of Supply February 19th, 2019

Madam Speaker, I am pleased to rise in the House today to speak in support of the motion put forward by the New Democratic Party.

The Conservative Party stands with the NDP to call on the Prime Minister to waive solicitor-client privilege and to urge the government to launch a public inquiry to provide Canadians with transparency and accountability with respect to allegations of interference in the prosecution of SNC-Lavalin.

The rule of law is a framework of laws and institutions that embodies four universal principles.

One is accountability, the idea that the government as well as private actors is accountable under the law.

Another is just laws, laws that are clear, publicized, stable and just. They are applied evenly and protect fundamental rights, including the security of persons, contract and property rights, and certain core human rights.

A third principle is open government, such that the processes by which the laws are enacted, administered and enforced are accessible, fair and efficient.

The fourth principle is accessible and impartial dispute resolution, such that justice is delivered in a timely fashion by competent, ethical and independent representatives and neutrals who are accessible, have adequate resources and reflect the makeup of the communities they serve.

Any member of a police force, and I as a former chief of police, understands how the rule of law dictates our daily life. This continues to be something I aim to uphold as a member of Parliament. It is important in our roles as politicians to uphold these core principles of the rule of law, as they must be upheld for any democracy to function.

Last week the Liberal Party blocked all attempts of accountability at the justice committee meeting. There was an opportunity to be open and transparent on the SNC-Lavalin affair. Instead, the Liberal majority at committee attempted to cover up and block the search for the truth on this affair. Opposition MPs worked together to come up with a reasonable witness list, with three key individuals. The Liberal Party offered up its own watered-down motion that excluded key witnesses and called for a closed-door meeting, with no media present or transcripts provided.

Though the Liberal members hold a majority on the justice committee, they had an opportunity, with the motion they put forward, to make an amendment and not hold the consideration and selection of witnesses in secret this week. Though it may be a tradition that those deliberations be done in camera, there was an opportunity in these exceptional circumstances to avoid the perception that there is something to hide. I must say that earlier today, one of the Liberal members publicly posted a tweet that she was going to ask the former attorney general to speak. That was not done in private, but certainly in public.

As we speak, this meeting is happening. However, the Canadian people will be unable to see or read what transpired. This is not the open and transparent government that Canadians were promised during the last election. The Prime Minister tried to assure Canadians that nothing unethical took place, citing that the former attorney general's presence in cabinet would speak for itself. Lo and behold, the former attorney general resigned, making it crystal clear that the Prime Minister is trying to hide from the truth with respect to the SNC-Lavalin affair.

It is clear that the Liberal Party has no interest in finding out the truth. The former attorney general has once again been denied an opportunity to speak.

To top it off, yesterday one of the Prime Minister's closest and most trusted political advisers resigned from office. This resignation is the clearest indication yet that there is much more to the SNC-Lavalin affair than we know.

The events that have transpired in the last several days are not the actions of someone with nothing to hide. This resignation does not settle this matter; instead, it only presents more questions that must be answered.

Canadians are rightly concerned about this issue, and we want to make sure that Canadians understand what has happened. My office has been flooded with emails and phone calls from Canadians across the country. They are concerned about this issue. My staff have received calls and emails from Canadians—not constituents of mine, but Canadians across the country—who have been unable to reach the offices of their Liberal MPs. We are hearing from frustrated Canadians expressing their disbelief on how the government is covering up this affair.

One email says that something is still going on in the justice committee. All the writer asks is to have the justice committee follow the rules, do the job and respect the rule of law to fix a serious problem for this country.

There have been troubling allegations with respect to possible interference by the Prime Minister's Office in the criminal prosecution of SNC-Lavalin and inconsistencies in the response from the Liberal Party. This is not a government that shows Canadians it is under control but a government in total chaos, and it raises critical questions of ethics and conduct from the highest-ranking office in this country.

The Conservative Party supports the NDP motion to call on the Prime Minister to waive solicitor-client privilege and urges the government to launch a public inquiry.

In 2015, the Liberal Party promised transparency and accountability during the election campaign. Today, we call on the Liberal Party to uphold that election promise.

Canadians are rightly concerned about the allegations of political interference in a criminal prosecution. Canadians expect the truth, and we have the power here to make sure they get it. The Prime Minister refuses to waive solicitor-client privilege as prime ministers before him have done when the public has demanded it. This would allow the former attorney general to speak, to tell her story, but the Prime Minister has kept her silent.

The story has been unfolding in a bizarre way, with almost daily changes to the Prime Minister's versions of events. High-profile resignations and coordinated cover-up manoeuvring suggest this is not an ordinary political scandal.

I am proud to stand with my colleagues today to support this motion urging the Prime Minister to waive privilege and launch a full public inquiry.

Questions Passed as Orders for Returns January 28th, 2019

With regard to funding on infrastructure and the Prime Minister’s comment that “there are impacts when you bring construction workers into a rural area”: (a) does the Prime Minister’s comment represent the position of the government; (b) how many cities, towns, villages and rural municipalities have declined funding for infrastructure projects because such projects would involve bringing in construction workers; and (c) have any mayors or elected officials of rural towns or cities requested that the government not provide infrastructure funding for projects which would lead to more construction workers and, if so, which ones and what towns or cities do they represent?

Questions Passed as Orders for Returns January 28th, 2019

With regard to classified and protected documents, since January 1, 2017, broken down by department or agency: (a) how many instances have occurred where it was discovered that classified or protected documents were left or stored in a manner which did not meet the requirements of the security level of the documents; (b) how many of the infractions in (a) occurred in the offices of ministerial exempt staff, including the staff of the Prime Minister, broken down by ministerial office; and (c) how many employees have lost their security clearance as a result of such infractions?

Questions Passed as Orders for Returns January 28th, 2019

With regard to expenditures on furniture rentals by the government since January 1, 2016, broken down by department or agency: (a) what is the total of all expenditures; and (b) what are the details of each expenditure, including the (i) vendor, (ii) amount, (iii) date of the contract, (iv) delivery date of the furniture, (v) duration of the rental, (vi) itemized description, including the quantity of rentals, (vii) file number?

Petitions January 28th, 2019

Madam Speaker, this petition supports Bill S-240. It is hard to believe that there is currently no law in Canada that prohibits going abroad and taking a person's vital organs without consent. This bill would fill that legal gap and needs to be passed right away.

Criminal Code December 10th, 2018

Mr. Speaker, I would agree with my colleague that this legislation was poorly thought out.

When we heard members on the other side talk about all the research and all the things that went into the legislation, we would have to question why they would want to remove that section. We are hearing from every religious denomination about all the attacks on their properties and their persons. To remove that section just did not make sense. All of us heard loud and clear from our constituents how opposed they were to it.

As I pointed out, when the minister brought the bill in on June 5, 2017, there was already a court case going on in Ottawa at the same time. It had to be something the Liberals either completely missed or did not care about and they moved forward. However, this is a critical issue for many Canadians. As we see the increase in hate crimes with respect to religion, this is one where the push back obviously made the Liberals change their ways. It is appropriate the section is still there.

Criminal Code December 10th, 2018

Mr. Speaker, if that member had heard my previous intervention on this whole issue, he would have heard me make it clear that it was not the government's fault she was moved. The fault comes in after the Liberals knew she had been moved.

The government has the ability to change the rules with respect to Correctional Service Canada. I give him full points that Correctional Service Canada makes those changes. I dare say the previous government did not know McClintic had been moved and I dare say that the current government did not know Rafferty had been moved.

Between McClintic and Rafferty, we heard from the government that changes had been made and these issues would not occur in the future. Ironically, Rafferty had already been moved. Perhaps Correctional Service Canada did not make the minister aware of that either, but that is where the problem comes in. The government has the right to make the rules, but it does not have the right to interpret them within the system.

Criminal Code December 10th, 2018

Mr. Speaker, before I begin with my prepared text, I would like to read a Facebook post by Mr. Rodney Stafford, who is from my riding. It starts with “Rodney Stafford is feeling angry”. His post reads:

I'm really trying to find the words to say right now. There are so many questions that have been unanswered regarding Terri-Lynne, and I'm NEVER going to rest until justice is upheld. NOW, knowing what all we have [all] been fighting for over the last three months, and the questions asked without real answers and run around, it has come to my knowledge as of today that MICHAEL RAFFERTY--THE MAN RESPONSIBLE FOR ALL ACTIONS THE DAY OF APRIL 8TH, 2009. THE ABDUCTION, BRUTAL RAPE, MURDER, AND CONCEALING OF EVIDENCE, WAS TRANSFERRED FROM HIS MAXIMUM SECURITY FACILITY TO A MEDIUM SECURITY FACILITY IN MARCH!!!!!! This means that ALL THIS TIME over the last three months, CORRECTIONS SERVICE CANADA AND OUR CANADIAN GOVERNMENT have been hiding the fact that NOT ONE, BUT BOTH people responsible for stealing the life of Victoria have been working their way to luxury. Where in the world does it make sense that the worst of the worst of criminals, not petty thieves, THE WORST OF THE WORST, CHILD KILLERS!!!, even get the opportunity at a better life. So now there are two child killers living in Medium Security penitentiaries, with frequent day passes, medical, dental, schooling, and access to air!!! I NEED CANADIANS EVERYWHERE TO HELP WITH THIS FIGHT!!! Our children and lost loved ones deserve justice and security within our country. I am so ashamed to be Canadian right now. During our meeting with Anne Kelly, Commissioner of Corrections, she was blatantly asked by Petrina if there was information about Rafferty that we didn't know about. Another dodged question. Corrections Service Canada NEEDS AN IMMEDIATE OVERHAUL if this is what they consider justice. Three, NOT ONE, but three appeal judges on October 24th, 2016 looked Michael Rafferty's lawyer in the face as they ALL stated he was right where he belongs. SAME AS THE TRIAL JUDGE!! So Corrections Service Canada, a year and a half later, says ha, no you're not. And lowers his security and transfers him. YET AGAIN WITHOUT MAKING CONTACT WITH ME regarding his transfer. Think about it??? That means, during the rallies and all this time that Canada has been fighting for real justice for Victoria and all our loved ones regarding the lowering of Security and transfer of Terri-Lynne, CSC has withheld this information about Michael Rafferty. I only received the information because I had requested it even though I was asked "There really hasn't been much activity on Michael Rafferty's file, would you still like me to send the information to you".??? "Oh ya", I said. Glad I did.

Thank you for taking the time to read this and please share the snot out of this. If Commissioner Anne Kelly is willing to sit and slap me in the face over and over again with the tragedy having lost Victoria to two brutal killers the way we all did, who is she willing to screw over??? THIS IS COMPLETELY UNACCEPTABLE ON EVERY LEVEL!!!! CHILD KILLERS!!!!!!

That was written by Rodney Stafford, the father of Tori Stafford. It shows there is a justice issue at stake here that all Canadians feel is very important, and in this case, a father has made his feelings very clear.

Now, I would like to share my time with the member for Sarnia—Lambton.

I am pleased to rise in the House to speak to Bill C-51. The purpose of this bill is to streamline the Criminal Code of Canada by removing certain provisions that are no longer relevant to contemporary society. Bill C-51 is a justice omnibus bill. It is one bill containing many changes on a variety of different matters.

The Prime Minister and his Liberals call omnibus bills “undemocratic”, and the Prime Minister pledged that the Liberal government would undo the practice of introducing omnibus bills. Regardless, my Conservative colleagues and I are aligned with the need to strengthen the provisions of the sexual assault legislation.

Former Conservative leader Rona Ambrose led the way for supporting victims of sexual assault by introducing a private members' bill, Bill C-337. This bill would make it mandatory for judges to participate in sexual assault training and education to ensure that the judiciary is aware of the challenges that sexual assault victims face. Her bill is designed to hold the Canadian judiciary responsible for the ongoing training of judges and the application of law in sexual assault trials. As we all remember, this bill was passed by the House of Commons and we were hopeful that it would pass the Senate. It has not passed yet.

We are pleased that the Liberals are planning to strengthen the sexual assault provisions in the Criminal Code surrounding consent and legal representation, and expanding the rape shield provisions. The Conservative Party stood up for the rights of victims of crime when the Canadian Victims Bill of Rights passed in 2015, and will continue to do so in the future.

Bill C-51 would amend, among other things, section 273.1 to clarify that an unconscious person is incapable of consenting. This is a reflection of the Supreme Court of Canada's decision in R. v. J.A. It proposes to amend section 273.2 to clarify the defence of mistaken belief if consent is not available and if the mistake is based on a mistake of law—for example, if the accused believed that the complainant's failure to resist or protest meant the complainant consented.

This bill would expand the rape shield provisions to include communications of a sexual nature or communications for a sexual purpose. These provisions prevent evidence of a complainant's prior sexual history being used to support the inference that the complainant was more likely to have consented to the sexual activity at issue, or that a complainant is less worthy of belief.

In addition, this bill would provide that a complainant would have a right to legal representation in rape shield cases. It would create a regime to determine whether an accused could introduce a complainant's private records at trial, which would be in his or her possession. This would complement the existing regime governing an accused's ability to obtain a complainant's private records when those records would be in the hands of a third party.

Another aspect of Bill C-51 that I strongly support is the removal of unconstitutional sections of the Criminal Code. Canadians should be able to expect that the Criminal Code accurately reflects the state of law, and, yes, Canadians who made that common-sense assumption could be wrong.

I agree with a few other revisions, for example, clause 41's removal of section 365 of the Criminal Code, which states, “Every one who fraudulently (a) pretends to exercise or to use any kind of witchcraft, sorcery, enchantment or conjuration”, and clause 4's removal of section 71 pertaining to duelling in the streets, which states:

Every one who

(a) challenges or attempts by any means to provoke another person to fight a duel,

(b) attempts to provoke a person to challenge another person to fight a duel, or

(c) accepts a challenge to fight a duel

There are a number of provisions to be removed. Obviously, it is long overdue that the sections dealing with duelling are removed.

One other positive aspect of Bill C-51 is the fact the government has finally backed down from removing section 176 from the Criminal Code.

One of the parts of the bill removes unconstitutional sections, as well as sections of the Criminal Code that, in the opinion of the government, are redundant or obsolete.

There has been much discussion on section 176. What is most interesting is that minister brought this bill before Parliament on June 5, 2017. Ironically, on June 9, 2017, a criminal court case in Ottawa dealt with the bill. It would seem that there was not a great deal of research done by the government on what that particular section of the code really meant. It is fair to say that section 176 of the Criminal Code makes it a criminal offence to obstruct or threaten a religious official, or to disrupt a religious service or ceremony. Section 176 is not unconstitutional, it has never been challenged in court, and it is not obsolete. Actually a number of individuals have been successfully prosecuted under it. Also, it is not redundant, as it is the only section of the Criminal Code that expressly protects the rights and freedoms of Canadians to practise their religion without fear or intimidation. Religious prejudice knows no borders and has no respect of persons. That is why I am glad that the government listened to the thousands of Canadians who signed petitions, wrote letters and emails, and made phone calls to MPs and the government to keep section 176 in the Criminal Code.

There was one other section of the code I did not agree with the government removing. That section has specific protection if someone attempts to attack the Queen. We all know this section is not used often. In fact, it has probably never been used. However, as state visits are rare, it should still remain in the code because it protects the person who represents the monarchy in Canada. It is still a very serious crime. Attempting to attack royalty, as Canada's head of state, is not the same as getting into a bar fight. The section is important and it has significant aspects.

I am pleased the government is no longer scrapping section 176. I am pleased with the clarification with respect to sexual assault. I am also pleased that a number of sections that are taking up space in the Criminal Code and no longer have any particular relevance are being removed.