Jim PANKIW

PANKIW, Jim, B.Sc., D.C.

Personal Data

Party
Independent
Constituency
Saskatoon--Humboldt (Saskatchewan)
Birth Date
August 7, 1966
Website
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jim_Pankiw
PARLINFO
http://www.parl.gc.ca/parlinfo/Files/Parliamentarian.aspx?Item=38a85dfb-6380-4740-9325-ec14b610590a&Language=E&Section=ALL
Profession
acupuncturist, chiropractor

Parliamentary Career

June 2, 1997 - March 26, 2000
REF
  Saskatoon--Humboldt (Saskatchewan)
March 27, 2000 - October 22, 2000
CA
  Saskatoon--Humboldt (Saskatchewan)
November 27, 2000 - May 23, 2004
CA
  Saskatoon--Humboldt (Saskatchewan)
April 10, 2002 - May 23, 2004
IND
  Saskatoon--Humboldt (Saskatchewan)

Most Recent Speeches (Page 1 of 88)


April 29, 2004

Mr. Jim Pankiw

Mr. Speaker, I would like to address the comments of the member from the Liberal Party who said that the House of Commons does not have the guidance of the highest court in the land, that any reference that has been made to the courts in respect to the legal definition of marriage would not matter if my private member's Bill C-450 was passed. She said it would shortcut the process and render the Supreme Court reference redundant.

That is the whole point of the bill. I am suggesting that this is such an obvious thing and that the will of the public is so clear and obvious. Certainly, that is the direction I am getting from my constituents. They do not want to see a reference to the Supreme Court because they do not care what will be said by the Supreme Court. They want Parliament to exercise its authority, its responsibility, and make a decision on this matter.

I would suggest that regardless of the arguments in opposition to the very clear and concise nature of my private member's bill, which would resolve this issue, by invoking the notwithstanding clause, the debate would end. Marriage would remain the union of a man and a woman. The Liberals are subverting democracy. There is no legitimate reason for them not to allow a vote.

In fact, I would suggest that not only are they making their intentions clear, clearly they do not intend to protect the legal definition of marriage or they would not be playing the charade that they are. By making the Supreme Court reference and by denying the right of every other member of Parliament in the House of Commons to have a private member's bill voted upon, they are interfering with my duty, my obligation, and my responsibility to my constituents to represent them by bringing forth issues that they want to see debated and voted on in the House of Commons. Constituents do not want to see their elected officials shirk their responsibility by shuffling these issues off to a court.

I think that the government's refusal to allow this to go to a vote in Parliament is shameful. It is a subversion of democracy and is making a mockery of the proceedings of the House of Commons.

Topic:   Private Members' Business
Subtopic:   Canada Marriage Act
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April 29, 2004

Mr. Jim Pankiw

Mr. Speaker, that is what I expected.

Did the current Prime Minister not say that he wanted to bring more democratic reform to the House of Commons? How democratic is it when there is one bill out of all the private members' bills that the parties collectively deem should not be votable? What are they afraid of? Why are they not willing to stand before their constituents and be held accountable for their actions?

The House of Commons is in serious need of some democratic reform and it is clear that the current Prime Minister is not going to be able to make good on his words on improving democracy in the House of Commons.

I will conclude by saying this. Marriage between a woman and a man constitutes a unique good for all society. It has a fundamental and irreplaceable role in building societies and civilizations. The social value of marriage comes from its role as a stabilizing force for the family, which in turn is the basic unit of our society.

Topic:   Private Members' Business
Subtopic:   Canada Marriage Act
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April 29, 2004

Mr. Jim Pankiw (Saskatoon—Humboldt, Ind.),

seconded by the member for Elk Island, moved that Bill C-450, an act to amend the Marriage (Prohibited Degrees) Act in order to protect the legal definition of "marriage" by invoking section 33 of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms, be read the second time and referred to a committee.

Mr. Speaker,I would like to thank my colleague from Elk Island for seconding the bill. Despite any political differences he or the leader of his party may have, he certainly is very respectful of democracy in seconding my bill and allowing it to come forward for second reading debate in the House.

The definition of marriage in the dictionary is “the legal union of a man and a woman”. To propose changing that definition we are actually trying to change the English language and what marriage actually is. I have always defended the legal definition of marriage as the union of a man and a woman, which is why I tabled Bill C-450 in Parliament: to protect the legal definition of marriage from being changed by taxpayer funded court challenges and special interest groups.

The method by which the bill would seek to do that is to invoke the notwithstanding clause of the Constitution, in other words, allowing Parliament to exercise its supreme authority over activists, courts and judges and taxpayer funded lobby groups which we do not see enough of.

I would also like to note for the record that I have voted in Parliament to preserve the current legal definition of marriage on two occasions. I am opposed to efforts that would force religious organizations to perform same sex marriage ceremonies if that is against their wishes.

I would like to highlight what the political parties' positions are on changing the legal definition of marriage and what their leaders have had to say. I will quote directly from a policy document of the New Democratic Party at page 31. This was moved by the NDP's lesbian, gay and bi-sexual committee and ratified by NDP convention delegates and MPs. It states:

THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that the NDP fully supports same-sex marriage--

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that an NDP federal government would, within its first mandate, introduce legislation, without a free vote, to make same-sex marriage legal; and--

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that should the issue come before the House, members of the NDP caucus shall vote in favour of same-sex marriage--

Just before I move on to the other leaders, I would like to note that the portion of the NDP policy document that states “without a free vote” is italicized and underlined. That is a highly contradictory policy because how can it be a democratic party if its policy is to not allow free votes?

With respect to the Conservative Party, their leader said that he could support codifying civil unions in law for same sex couples. He was quoted as saying on August 13, 2003 “I think that would be a reasonable compromise”. On March 23, 2004, he said that he would accept the concept of same sex civil unions under provincial laws.

With respect to the Liberal Party, former Prime Minister Jean Chrétien on August 13, 2003, said “We want to legalize the union of homosexuals”.

The current Prime Minister on March 13, 2004, said “In all likelihood I will probably support same sex marriage”. On January 29 of this year the current Prime Minister promised that he would follow through on his predecessor's bill to legalize gay marriage.

Despite what misleading media reports want us to believe, recent polls show that a clear majority of Canadians, 67%, want the legal definition of marriage preserved. Unfortunately, none of the political parties are prepared to stand up and defend traditional family values or prevent the courts from taking the next step and ordering religious organizations to perform same sex ceremonies.

It is therefore up to Canadians to send Ottawa a message. In the upcoming election, I urge the constituents of Saskatoon—Humboldt to analyze this very closely and carefully in terms of my strong defence of the legal definition of marriage to make sure their voices are heard.

More than a year ago, as members are well aware, the rules of the House of Commons changed and since that time all private member's bills before the House are automatically deemed votable.

Topic:   Private Members' Business
Subtopic:   Canada Marriage Act
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April 29, 2004

Mr. Jim Pankiw

Except for mine, that is right.

There is a subcommittee that reviewed my bill. All parties have participating members on the committee and their finding was that my bill should not be votable for the reason that it was unconstitutional. That was the reason given.

However, my bill proposes one thing and one thing only and that is to invoke the notwithstanding clause of the Constitution to protect the legal definition of marriage. It is highly preposterous to suggest that a bill that proposes using a section of the Constitution could be unconstitutional. That is absolutely ridiculous.

What this amounts to is a lack of willingness by politicians to stand and be held accountable. Clearly they can see where the public is on the issue, but they do not want it to come to a vote in Parliament.

Mr. Speaker, I am seeking unanimous consent of the House to override the ruling of that subcommittee and deem my bill votable.

Topic:   Private Members' Business
Subtopic:   Canada Marriage Act
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April 29, 2004

Mr. Jim Pankiw (Saskatoon—Humboldt, Ind.)

Mr. Speaker, in undemocratic countries people who justly criticize their governments are targeted by political witch hunts that punish and censor free speech.

In Canada, the instrument of coercion used to intimidate and silence those who disagree with failed government social policy is the Canadian Human Rights Commission.

This kangaroo court is headed by a patronage appointee. It recently recommended that an elected member of Parliament be dragged before a tribunal of jesters because I publicly criticized the government's apartheid scheme. Even worse, it turns out that this politically motivated, malicious persecution is as corrupt and morally bankrupt as the commission itself.

The so-called investigator for the Canadian political thought police was a candidate for a political party and member of the shadow cabinet. Also, the self-professed communications expert turned out to have been contracted by an Indian band to produce reports mimicking the Liberals' racist approach to Indian affairs.

In my own defence, the truth is not a crime and should not be censored, in spite of wishes by the Canadian political correctness commission.

Topic:   Statements By Members
Subtopic:   Canadian Human Rights Commission
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