December 16, 2010

CPC

Bev Oda

Conservative

Hon. Bev Oda (Minister of International Cooperation, CPC)

Mr. Speaker, let me be clear. There are no Canadian dollars going directly to any government official in Afghanistan. Canada is concerned with the corruption issue in Afghanistan. However, all Canadian dollars do not go directly to the government and all contracts using Canadian funds follow the Government of Canada's contracting policies and Treasury Board guidelines.

CIDA is always actively challenging corruption and includes anti-corruption clauses in its agreements.

Topic:   Oral Questions
Subtopic:   Afghanistan
Permalink
BQ

Johanne Deschamps

Bloc Québécois

Ms. Johanne Deschamps (Laurentides—Labelle, BQ)

Mr. Speaker, yesterday, the Minister of Foreign Affairs told us there were more pros than cons to concluding an agreement with the U.S. government for establishing a “security perimeter”. The minister might be right. However, it is not up to him alone to make that decision. A debate and a vote in the House are required.

Since negotiations on the “security perimeter” have a scope comparable to that of a treaty, will the Prime Minister promise to hold a debate and a vote on the issue before signing anything?

Topic:   Oral Questions
Subtopic:   Public Safety
Permalink
CPC

Lawrence Cannon

Conservative

Hon. Lawrence Cannon (Minister of Foreign Affairs, CPC)

Mr. Speaker, I am so glad to see that the Bloc Québécois is interested in economic issues. The Bloc Québécois is barely ever interested in this issue, while our government has made the economy and job creation a priority ever since it got here. We will continue in that vein with the Americans, while protecting our borders against terrorist attacks.

Topic:   Oral Questions
Subtopic:   Public Safety
Permalink
BQ

Jean-Yves Laforest

Bloc Québécois

Mr. Jean-Yves Laforest (Saint-Maurice—Champlain, BQ)

Mr. Speaker, the same goes for the free trade agreement with the European Union: the government is refusing to be transparent. The Bloc Québécois was the first federal political party to call for such an agreement. We recently met with the Quebec government's negotiator during caucus. The problem is that we got more information about the negotiations with Europe from Quebec's negotiator, Pierre Marc Johnson, than we are getting from the Minister of International Trade.

Does the minister not find that unusual?

Topic:   Oral Questions
Subtopic:   International Trade
Permalink
CPC

Peter Van Loan

Conservative

Hon. Peter Van Loan (Minister of International Trade, CPC)

Mr. Speaker, we are quite proud of having initiated these free trade talks with the European Union. This is something that proffers to Canadians a potential benefit to our economy of $12 billion annually. What does that mean? It means should we deliver on this agreement, we will have thousands of new jobs for Canadians, the families of Canadians will be more prosperous and the Canadian economy will continue to grow.

It is this focus on the economy, jobs and the prosperity of Canadians that is the focus of this government. That is why we are delivering on a free trade agreement with the European Union.

Topic:   Oral Questions
Subtopic:   International Trade
Permalink
LIB

John McKay

Liberal

Hon. John McKay (Scarborough—Guildwood, Lib.)

Mr. Speaker, for three days MPs have been debating a question of privilege raised against the CIDA minister who misled the House on the recommended KAIROS funding. For three days, the minister has refused to respond.

Three days ago, her former parliamentary secretary had the integrity to admit that he had misled the House when he spoke on behalf of the minister. Will the minister show the same level of integrity and admit that she misled the House?

Topic:   Oral Questions
Subtopic:   International Co-operation
Permalink
CPC

John Baird

Conservative

Hon. John Baird (Leader of the Government in the House of Commons and Minister of the Environment, CPC)

Mr. Speaker, the Minister of International Cooperation shows integrity each and every day she enters the House of Commons. She brings a great deal of integrity to work on international development. People around the world and people in our country are very lucky to have her on the job.

Topic:   Oral Questions
Subtopic:   International Co-operation
Permalink
LIB

John McKay

Liberal

Hon. John McKay (Scarborough—Guildwood, Lib.)

Mr. Speaker, apparently, the minister cannot answer for herself.

Here is a little problem. I have sitting on my desk in front of me, in black and white, a response to an order paper question, signed by the parliamentary secretary for the minister, saying that it was CIDA's decision to cut the funding for KAIROS. This is unequivocally false.

How can Canadians have any confidence that the government is telling them the truth, in light of these serious ethical relapses? Will the Prime Minister demand the minister's resignation?

Topic:   Oral Questions
Subtopic:   International Co-operation
Permalink
CPC

Bev Oda

Conservative

Hon. Bev Oda (Minister of International Cooperation, CPC)

Mr. Speaker, I remind the House that the parliamentary secretary has apologized.

I also want to remind the House, particularly at this season, our thoughts are with those living in developing countries. That is why we want to ensure that those living in poverty are actually seeing the benefits of the international co-operation and development of Canadians. That is why we want to ensure that next year more children will be helped in their health and more mothers will stay alive, more children will be educated and more people will be fed.

Topic:   Oral Questions
Subtopic:   International Co-operation
Permalink
NDP

Bill Siksay

New Democratic Party

Mr. Bill Siksay (Burnaby—Douglas, NDP)

Mr. Speaker, today we learned that two more Conservative political staff blocked the release of access to information documents. This again reminds us of the failure of the Conservatives to fulfill their promise to be accountable and transparent in government.

Do Conservative political staff routinely argue with public servants who are mandated to uphold access to information laws? How many more are involved in this kind of partisan interference? Has anyone other than Sebastien Tognieri been held responsible?

Topic:   Oral Questions
Subtopic:   Access to Information
Permalink
CPC

John Baird

Conservative

Hon. John Baird (Leader of the Government in the House of Commons and Minister of the Environment, CPC)

Mr. Speaker, the individual in question has submitted a resignation. The minister immediately accepted it.

The law is very clear. Every ministerial assistant and every public servant is expected to comply with the law. It was this government, as a matter of priority, that sought to expand the access to information law, and we did. When we wanted to bring a little light to the Canadian Wheat Board, every New Democrat member stood and wanted to keep the cloak of darkness at the Wheat Board. What do they have to hide at the Wheat Board and the NDP?

Topic:   Oral Questions
Subtopic:   Access to Information
Permalink
NDP

Glenn Thibeault

New Democratic Party

Mr. Glenn Thibeault (Sudbury, NDP)

Mr. Speaker, yesterday the Competition Bureau gave us one more example of the current government choosing Bay Street bankers over Canadian families.

The bureau says that Visa and MasterCard are using their market power to squeeze higher fees out of businesses. The government's voluntary approach to credit car rates is not working for anyone but the credit card companies. Guess who pays the price in the end? Working families.

When will the government end credit card gouging?

Topic:   Oral Questions
Subtopic:   Financial Institutions
Permalink
CPC

Ted Menzies

Conservative

Mr. Ted Menzies (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Finance, CPC)

Mr. Speaker, first, anything we have done to try to protect consumers, the NDP have voted against it. I wanted make everyone aware of that.

We heard concerns from small businesses and from consumers. We put in place a code of conduct that was welcomed by business and by consumers. The opposition voted against that. Obviously they are against consumers and business. We understand that. We do not know why.

We continue to monitor compliance and any possible violation will be investigated.

Topic:   Oral Questions
Subtopic:   Financial Institutions
Permalink
CPC

James Rajotte

Conservative

Mr. James Rajotte (Edmonton—Leduc, CPC)

Mr. Speaker, our Conservative government has a strong record of improving retirement income for Canadians.

First, we have lowered the tax bill for seniors and pensioners by over $2 billion a year, including pension income splitting and the tax-free savings account.

Second, we consulted and introduced landmark reform to federally-regulated pension plans.

Third, as over 90% of pensions are provincially regulated, we worked with our provincial and territorial counterparts on larger retirement income issues.

Could the parliamentary secretary update the House with the latest news on this front?

Topic:   Oral Questions
Subtopic:   Pensions
Permalink
CPC

Ted Menzies

Conservative

Mr. Ted Menzies (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Finance, CPC)

Mr. Speaker, I thank the member for his great work in chairing the finance committee.

We are proposing a landmark, new, pooled registered pension plan. This plan will support millions who do not now have access to private sector pension plans. This will support small businesses, those who work for small businesses, as well as the self-employed. Unlike the Liberals' bureaucratic proposal that they have put forward, and that has already been rejected by the provinces, we are in partnership with the provinces in any pension plan.

Topic:   Oral Questions
Subtopic:   Pensions
Permalink
LIB

Anita Neville

Liberal

Hon. Anita Neville (Winnipeg South Centre, Lib.)

Mr. Speaker, the Conservative government has failed to protect jobs in Thompson and bring Vale to the negotiating table. Vale Inco's decision to shut down its nickel smelting and refining operations in Thompson will eliminate 500 jobs and stifle economic development in northern Manitoba.

The city of Thompson and the province has made it clear that they want to work with Vale to find a solution. Will the nine Manitoba Conservative members finally show some leadership, speak up and stand up for Manitoba?

Topic:   Oral Questions
Subtopic:   Mining Industry
Permalink
CPC

Tony Clement

Conservative

Hon. Tony Clement (Minister of Industry, CPC)

Mr. Speaker, the hon. member is a little late to this situation. I have been in contact with the company and with the Manitoba government. The Minister of Public Safety himself attended a meeting with officials of the Manitoba government to see what the federal government could do.

We are on top of this issue. Why are the Liberals not and why is she not? That is what I would like to know.

Topic:   Oral Questions
Subtopic:   Mining Industry
Permalink
BQ

Yves Lessard

Bloc Québécois

Mr. Yves Lessard (Chambly—Borduas, BQ)

Mr. Speaker, the Minister of Human Resources and Skills Development refuses to renew the pilot project to ease the criteria for employment insurance. She says she would rather offer more training. We agree with the idea of training more workers. However, to access Emploi Québec programs, you must first qualify for employment insurance. Consequently, many unemployed workers will not have access to benefits or training.

Will the minister stop laughing at the unemployed and renew the pilot project to ease access to employment insurance?

Topic:   Oral Questions
Subtopic:   Employment Insurance
Permalink
CPC

Diane Finley

Conservative

Hon. Diane Finley (Minister of Human Resources and Skills Development, CPC)

Mr. Speaker, the objective of most of our pilot projects is to encourage people to return to work as quickly as possible because it is best for them and their families. This pilot project did not work well and did not meet these objectives. Therefore, we let it die.

Topic:   Oral Questions
Subtopic:   Employment Insurance
Permalink
NDP

Jean Crowder

New Democratic Party

Ms. Jean Crowder (Nanaimo—Cowichan, NDP)

Mr. Speaker, the environment commissioner said that the federal government was failing in its responsibility to monitor water bodies on reserves.

Grassy Narrows First Nations was recently revisited by Dr. Harada 35 years after his initial visit. Residents still suffer from mercury poisoning and 43% of the people have mercury levels three times over the Health Canada limit.

When will the government finally take first nations' health seriously and take concrete steps to monitor water quality on reserves?

Topic:   Oral Questions
Subtopic:   Aboriginal Affairs
Permalink

December 16, 2010