House of Commons photo


Crucial Fact

  • His favourite word was international.

Last in Parliament August 2019, as Conservative MP for Calgary Forest Lawn (Alberta)

Won his last election, in 2015, with 48% of the vote.

Statements in the House

Budget Implementation Act, 2018, No. 2 November 1st, 2018

Mr. Speaker, what is he talking about? The Conservative government brought down $40 billion of deficit and had a balanced budget when it left office, not $60 billion of deficit he is talking about. It was the Conservative government.

I remember the member sitting over there spouting all these things, and none of the ideas came through. Let me remind him of one thing. He used to say that there were too many pages in the budget implementation act. I remind him that right now the Liberals' budget implementation act is 800 pages long. What is he talking about? He should look in the mirror.

Budget Implementation Act, 2018, No. 2 November 1st, 2018

Mr. Speaker, this is a new member who came to the House three years ago, and he is trying to talk about our record 10 years ago. I do not know where he was in 2008 when the whole world went into a recession. We do not live on a separate island. It was because of our economic management that we did not have to bail banks out and survived that recession. It was through the good management of the Conservative government.

As I have said, the former Conservative trade minister is the one who led the groundwork for CETA and TPP, something the current government is now signing and trying to take credit for. The Conservative government did it, and the current government is reaping is based on what Conservatives did before it went into power. We are well known for managing our economy very well.

Budget Implementation Act, 2018, No. 2 November 1st, 2018

Mr. Speaker, it is my pleasure to rise to speak on the budget implementation act.

This morning my friend John reminded me that there were dark clouds in the Liberals' sunshine environment, as Liberals said during election time. However, there is one issue that really bothers me, and that was what happened yesterday when the Prime Minister talked to students. He told them that the opposition parties liked to shout at respectful Liberals.

I am profiled in the grade nine high school book in Alberta, talking about democracy. I go to schools and talk about our great democracy and how our country is run. I never run down anyone. We are all here equally in this chamber to talk about issues for all Canadians. This is the chamber where we have democracy, yet the Prime Minister went to a school and partisanly told students that the Liberals were respectful and the opposition was not respectful.

May I remind the Prime Minister, if I recall correctly, that he was a member of the opposition when he first entered the House. Now suddenly he thinks that side is respectful. Should he impart this knowledge to young students? Shame.

I am splitting my time with my great Irish friend from Durham, Mr. Speaker.

We are talking about the dark clouds since the Liberals became government. The last member who spoke talked about the veteran cuts. Cuts to veterans was brought forward by the Liberal government. My colleague was a former trade minister and he did all the legwork for the trade agreements that the Liberal government signed. The Liberals want to take credit for that.

It is interesting that the word “Harper” has become so common in the chamber. I hear more about Mr. Harper than when he was the prime minister. Every minute, the Liberals keep talking about Harper. They forget that they have been governing for three and a half years. It was interesting to hear the the NDP member say that the Liberals were worse than Harper. Harper is a great word in the House.

However, talking about the Liberals' record, it is terrible. As I said during my leadership race, the deficit is in the blood of the Trudeaus. Whenever they come into power, we end up having strong deficits and a deficit balance. Our taxes and our debt keep rising. As I already pointed out, the Liberals increased the debt by $60 billion.

Where do things stand today under these dark clouds? Since the Liberals have come to power, the last member who spoke said the business environment was great. It is not great. The business environment today is what is causing serious concern for Canadians, a concern about jobs, the welfare of their children and health care. It is a serious concern. The disastrous handling of the Trans Mountain pipeline and the bill that would stop the pipelines being built under a regulatory regime will take investors away from our country.

We must remember that we share a very long border with the south. We share an integrated economy. If south of the border creates a business environment that is far more appealing to investors, then money flows there. It is not just money, but jobs flow south as well. That is where the danger is.

When we were in government, and my friend sitting next to me was the minister of state for finance, I checked with him, we introduced a regulatory process. We looked at how a regulatory process in our country would stifle competitiveness. To do that, we set out to find out how many regulator processes there were in our country.

Let me go back and give my own example with my son. He wanted to go into an agricultural business, and he is still going into it with my grandson. We tied in with farmers in my colleague's riding to export a product. We are still mired in regulatory reforms. It is not ease of business to do that. It has taken one and a half years and we are still in the process of trying to meet all the regulatory conditions that are laid out across the country.

The important point here is this. If we ask the government how many regulations there are, which it is supposed to know, it will not be able to answer the question. If it does not know that, how will it reduce the regulations? Even there, it cannot do this thing, yet the Liberals are saying that they have policies that are helping the business environment grow.

I come from Alberta and it is concerned about what the government is doing to the economy of Alberta. Irrespective of the fact that the Minister of Natural Resources is from Alberta, we do not see any kind of action coming from the government. It is a big concern.

Now the Liberals say that they are going to put in a carbon tax. Our carbon footprint is 1.6% of global pollution in the environment, yet we are the country putting a carbon tax burden on Canadians. Like everyone has pointed out to the government, it is a tax grab.

I read this morning that because the Liberals have announced they want to give money back to the people, people are saying that it will not impact them. Therefore, how are their habits going to change if they are going to get their money back? The carbon tax is a tax grab, as everyone says. We need to have an environment of the economy moving forward, which the government is failing to do. It seems to have priorities that do not address the main concerns of Canadians, which are jobs, health care and a future for our children.

These are good statements made by the government. However, as everyone has pointed out, when the government says “trust it” that is like the Nigerian prince saying, “Your cheque is in the mail”. More and more Canadians are saying that they do not trust the government.

We are concerned. There are dark clouds in the sunshine environment of the Liberal government.

Diwali October 29th, 2018

Mr. Speaker, I will be hosting the 18th national Diwali celebration on Parliament Hill tomorrow evening at the Sir John A. Macdonald Hall.

The success of this annual event is due to the full participation and support of temples, organizations and community members from across Canada. I will mention just a few of our long-standing supporters: BAPS Toronto, Lakshmi Narayan Mandir of Scarborough, the Hindu Bhajan Mandly of Calgary, the Bharat Mata Mandir of Brampton, the Canada India Foundation, RANA Canada, the Overseas Friends of India (Canada) and the India Canada Association of Montreal. With everyone's support, this year we have surpassed our budget with a healthy surplus.

I also acknowledge the support this event has received over the years from all my colleagues from all political parties.

Please join the community tomorrow to celebrate Diwali. I wish a happy Diwali to everyone.

Hindu Heritage Month October 4th, 2018

moved for leave to introduce Bill C-416, an act to designate the month of October as Hindu heritage month.

Mr. Speaker, I would first like to thank my colleague from Barrie—Innisfil for seconding this bill.

I rise today to introduce my private member's bill to designate the month of October of every year as Hindu heritage month. The bill recognizes the importance of the role played by Hindu Canadians in our country's multicultural social fabric and economic growth.

Hindus across the world celebrate significant festivals, such as Diwali, hosted here on Parliament Hill since 1998. It was in Ottawa when the first Diwali took place in the national legislature in the western world. I invite you, Mr. Speaker, on October 30, to please come to the 18th Diwali celebration.

By proclaiming the month of October as Hindu heritage month, the Government of Canada would recognize the contributions of Hindu Canadians as part of the success story that has made Canada the best country in the world.

(Motions deemed adopted, bill read the first time and printed)

Filipino Heritage Month October 1st, 2018

Mr. Speaker, it is indeed my pleasure to rise and speak to this motion. I would like to thank the member for Scarborough Centre for bringing forward this motion, which all of us completely support.

Before I start, I would like to pay tribute to my former colleague, Senator Tobias Enverga, the first Filipino Canadian senator, who was ultimately dubbed the pride of the Philippines in this Parliament. We will continue to miss him.

For 21 years, the Filipino community in my riding has been my strongest supporter. I would like to mention to my hon. colleague that she forgot to mention Calgary when she mentioned every other city. We have a very dynamic community in Calgary, and I have been lucky enough to be honoured and privileged to have this strong support. As a matter of fact, I am considered an honorary Filipino in my community.

I would like to recognize a few of the great Filipinos in my riding who have supported and continue working for the community: Ernie Amante; Elvie Valeroso; Roselyn Bernardo; Bill Bernardo; Melba Buenaventura; and most important, the Diamond Seniors Club, which every year hosts a lot of festivals for seniors. I am always honoured and privileged to be invited to its functions. As everyone has said unanimously in this House, every time a Filipino festival is held, it is full of joy and laughter.

Let me say, as my hon. colleague mentioned, that in 2015, the Filipino community became the largest community of permanent residents in this country. As a matter of fact, when I accompanied former prime minister Harper on his visit to the Philippines, he mentioned that Tagalog is the fastest-growing language in Canada.

As I have stated, the Filipino contribution to our country is immense, and we are extremely happy that it forms a part of the great multi-ethnic mosaic of Canada.

I made two other visits to the Philippines during my tenure as the parliamentary secretary for Foreign Affairs. One of the most notable events I want to bring to members' attention is that there is a community housing project called Telus-GK Village, just outside Manila. It is funded by the Telus Corporation, which is a telecommunications company. It is a great Canadian corporation involved in development projects. I have been to this village, and I see great happiness and children enjoying the facilities Telus has provided.

In 2012, CAE, another great Canadian success story, from Montreal, built an aircraft simulator for Cebu airlines. I had the opportunity to be at the opening ceremony with former president Aquino. We put a time capsule there to be opened in 100 years' time, and my name is there as Canada's representative. As I like telling my Filipino supporters, I am in the soil of the Philippines for the next 100 years.

As I said, we can look anywhere in Canada, in rural Alberta and elsewhere, and we will find Filipino workers. They are recognized as the best workers. During my visit to the Philippines, many Canadian companies were there recruiting Filipinos to come to work. They are hard-working people. I personally have this knowledge, because I have assisted many of them with their permanent residency in our country, and I will continue to do that. Aside from the fact that they make a great contribution, and examples have been given of their hard work and success, they form part of our multi-ethnic country.

Being an honorary Filipino, I always find it a pleasure to go to their festivals. It is great to see the people dancing and singing and the great Filipino culture. Their personalties have great warmth. They embrace the rest of the world, which is a strength of this country. This is why everywhere around the world, whether it is the Middle East, southeast Asia or Hong Kong, Filipinos are some of the most coveted workers. They have come to Canada as nannies. They now come and work in the service industry. Around the world, Filipinos are always welcomed as workers because of their strength.

When I was visiting the Philippines, its minister said that Filipinos living overseas are some of the greatest contributors back to their own country to help develop it, and after its independence, it continues to develop.

The Philippines is also a great partner of Canada in the ASEAN. I attended the ASEAN conference in the Philippines and have seen the contributions made by the Philippines around the world. On many occasions, we have had the opportunity to meet its foreign minister to talk to him about the United Nations.

We are extremely honoured and delighted that Filipinos make such a great contribution to our country. I could go on naming what they have done and continue to do in building our country, and for that I would like to thank this great community very much. I am honoured and privileged to have the title of honorary Filipino in my riding and to have had their support 21 years ago when I first started on this political journey. For that I am very grateful to them.

I want to thank the member for Scarborough Centre for bringing this motion forward. I think there will be unanimous consent for this motion in the House for their great contribution.

Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership Implementation Act September 18th, 2018

Madam Speaker, I have said it before and I will say it again very clearly that the Conservatives support the TPP, period.

Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership Implementation Act September 18th, 2018

Madam Speaker, the member has raised some concerns. He can have a chat with the parliamentary secretary and the Liberals about whatever his concerns are, but here, right now, our party is willing to proceed very quickly, because we know that the TPP is good for Canada. That is why all of us are supporting the agreement.

Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership Implementation Act September 18th, 2018

Madam Speaker, I remember when my colleague on the other side was sitting over here. The Conservatives were in government. We were talking about the trade agenda. It was the Conservative government that was proposing the agenda very strongly. When the member was sitting over here, I remember him opposing all of those things and saying to go slow. Today, he is standing up blustering about what the Liberals are doing. I can say that when he was in opposition, he never supported the trade agenda that he is now talking about and that he is going to fight for.

It is great that we are here today. My party is supporting it. I am glad the member's party is supporting it. I say to my friends in the NDP, the TPP is good for Canada.

Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership Implementation Act September 18th, 2018

I agree, Madam Speaker, and sometimes I get carried away. Nevertheless, let us get this moving forward fast, because this is good for Canada.