Garry W. BREITKREUZ

BREITKREUZ, Garry W., B.Ed.

Personal Data

Party
Conservative
Constituency
Yorkton--Melville (Saskatchewan)
Birth Date
October 21, 1945
Website
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Garry_Breitkreuz
PARLINFO
http://www.parl.gc.ca/parlinfo/Files/Parliamentarian.aspx?Item=3fdae7dd-2050-4a7b-a44f-0ef36124b8bd&Language=E&Section=ALL
Profession
farmer, principal, teacher

Parliamentary Career

October 25, 1993 - April 27, 1997
REF
  Yorkton--Melville (Saskatchewan)
June 2, 1997 - October 22, 2000
REF
  Yorkton--Melville (Saskatchewan)
  • Deputy Whip of the Official Opposition (August 1, 2000 - December 17, 2001)
March 27, 2000 - October 22, 2000
CA
  Yorkton--Melville (Saskatchewan)
  • Deputy Whip of the Official Opposition (August 1, 2000 - December 17, 2001)
November 27, 2000 - May 23, 2004
CA
  Yorkton--Melville (Saskatchewan)
  • Deputy Whip of the Official Opposition (August 1, 2000 - December 17, 2001)
  • Chief Opposition Whip (December 18, 2001 - April 3, 2002)
  • Whip of the Canadian Alliance (February 1, 2002 - April 4, 2002)
  • Deputy Whip of the Official Opposition (April 4, 2002 - December 22, 2003)
  • Conservative Party Deputy House Leader (January 9, 2004 - February 1, 2004)
  • Deputy House Leader of the Official Opposition (January 9, 2004 - February 1, 2004)
  • Deputy House Leader of the Official Opposition (February 2, 2004 - July 21, 2004)
  • Conservative Party Deputy House Leader (February 2, 2004 - July 21, 2004)
December 23, 2003 - May 23, 2004
CPC
  Yorkton--Melville (Saskatchewan)
  • Conservative Party Deputy House Leader (January 9, 2004 - February 1, 2004)
  • Deputy House Leader of the Official Opposition (January 9, 2004 - February 1, 2004)
  • Deputy House Leader of the Official Opposition (February 2, 2004 - July 21, 2004)
  • Conservative Party Deputy House Leader (February 2, 2004 - July 21, 2004)
June 28, 2004 - November 29, 2005
CPC
  Yorkton--Melville (Saskatchewan)
  • Deputy House Leader of the Official Opposition (February 2, 2004 - July 21, 2004)
  • Conservative Party Deputy House Leader (February 2, 2004 - July 21, 2004)
January 23, 2006 - September 7, 2008
CPC
  Yorkton--Melville (Saskatchewan)
October 14, 2008 - March 26, 2011
CPC
  Yorkton--Melville (Saskatchewan)
May 2, 2011 - August 2, 2015
CPC
  Yorkton--Melville (Saskatchewan)
May 2, 2011 -
CPC
  Yorkton--Melville (Saskatchewan)

Most Recent Speeches (Page 1 of 310)


June 17, 2015

Mr. Garry Breitkreuz (Yorkton—Melville, CPC)

Mr. Speaker, family has always been important to me and I am thankful for the many blessings bestowed upon me and my wife. My four wonderful children, their spouses, and 12 grandchildren make me look forward to October 20 and a new chapter in my life.

Our Conservative government also values families and knows that they are the solid building block of our society. That is why we are supporting choice for parents who know best how to care for their children.

Giving $160 for children under six and $60 for children up to 17 years of age makes Canada the envy of most nations, but we are also giving solid support to seniors who, together with those parents with children, can split their income for tax purposes and save up to $2,000 per year.

If the Liberals or NDP were ever to be in charge, this would all disappear. I hope that all Canadians will realize what our Prime Minister and government have done and what is at risk in the next election.

I welcome some of my family to Parliament Hill today. I was elected 22 years ago because I wanted my children and grandchildren to have a better Canada to live in.

May God bless Canada.

Topic:   Statements By Members
Subtopic:   Taxation
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June 10, 2015

Mr. Garry Breitkreuz (Yorkton—Melville, CPC)

Mr. Chair, I have not prepared a speech. I was walking down the aisle for our votes yesterday and it struck me how much I am going to miss the people that I am working with. I want to stand and thank them so much for the wonderful opportunities they have given me, the colleagues on my side, the colleagues on the other side that I have worked with. It has been just a tremendous experience.

I see some of my good friends sitting over on the other side and I appreciate some of the fond memories I have of being with them. I will have huge withdrawal symptoms. It is going to be a very difficult adjustment for me after 22 years to leave this place because I have so many memories. I have listened to the speeches here and they bring back so many memories, I cannot recount them all.

I will give members an idea of what has moulded my career here. I became a Christian when I was in university. It was a huge struggle for me. I was challenged to scratch below the surface on issues and I dabbled in many faiths. Finally, I had to make a decision. Scratching below the surface has defined my career here.

I was challenged shortly after I was elected by my constituents on the gun control issue. Some know my nickname is “Mr. Gun”, but I was challenged to scratch below the surface on that issue and the rest is history. I had never planned on that. I know very little about firearms and yet by scratching below the surface, I realized that $2 billion would be much better spent by putting 10,000 more policemen on the street if we are going to improve public safety. That is just the bird's-eye view of what has become almost a defining part of my career here.

I worked a lot on the abortion issue and again, I had to scratch below the surface. What is it that is in the womb of a woman? I had to look at that very carefully. There are so many other things that I have worked on and I always tried to take a principled approach. Many people have helped me in that and I want to thank them very, very much.

The opposition members are a key part of that because they challenge our thinking.

When I sat with the Prime Minister from 1993-97, we would be on duty and duty was not his favourite time, I must say. He was also one of those people who would really scratch below the surface. He is very intellectual. When he was trying to determine whether to run for the leadership of the party, he called me. I did not know what to advise him because, I have to be careful what I say here, but I did not know that he would be that good a Prime Minister at that point. He has turned out to be phenomenal from the person I did duty with way back then.

I want to conclude by thanking so many people. I thanked all of my colleagues here and all of the staff. I already rose on a statement a while back and thanked them. But I must emphasize that my wife, Lydia, needs so much thanks, and sympathy as well. I have been in almost every constituency in the country speaking on that issue and some constituencies on the east and west coasts more than once. She has been a political widow. For her to stay with me, I appreciate that more than she will probably ever know.

My family were all teenagers when I first started and we have one perk. That perk was free telephone calls home. I became closer to my children by that 10-minute call every evening. It was a huge commitment on my part, but it actually was a good thing. My wife has suggested that when I retire we should put a phone on her side of the bed and one on my side of the bed because we have talked more than we normally would have. I probably would not have talked to my children either as much as I did once I became an MP.

I have had terrific staff. The right people came and sought a job with me. Dennis Young and Elizabeth Nye were the first, but Sandy is one of the last ones now. They have made me look good and I really appreciate that. There was tremendous support there.

I must also thank my constituents and all the people who have worked on my campaigns over the years. Some of them are no longer on this earth, but they really have given me strong support. With every election my plurality has increased and after seven elections that is quite amazing, so I want to thank them for the wonderful faith they have shown in me.

I am starting to break up, so I think maybe that is a good time to conclude. I thank everyone so very much.

Topic:   Government Orders
Subtopic:   Members not seeking re-election to the 42nd Parliament
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May 29, 2015

Mr. Garry Breitkreuz

Mr. Speaker, I would like to congratulate the member for Prince George—Peace River for taking on the co-chairmanship of the outdoors caucus. Members from all parties are a part of it, including the Green Party.

His job there will highlight the traditional heritage activities that we need to protect in Canada. There are people who are trying to destroy our heritage activities, and we need to defend them. I wish the member the best as he co-chairs the caucus. I am sure he will do a good job.

Who are we representing? It is probably between four and five million people who are looking to us for leadership on the file we have been debating today. That is a sizeable part of the Canadian mosiac. It indicates how many people are interested in our heritage outdoors activities. As an example, there are more people who fish than play hockey and golf together in Canada. It is these activities that we need to ensure are properly protected.

Hunting is enjoyed by many people, and we need to get more young people involved. The more that young people are involved in these outdoor heritage activities, the less involved they are in unhealthy activities. We need to promote these things. Young people can enjoy hunting, shooting, fishing and all of these outdoor activities.

I thank the member for this question. I think it strikes at the heart of why the Conservative Party represents a part of the population in Canada that the other parties would like to dismiss, and in fact fight against.

Topic:   Government Orders
Subtopic:   Common Sense Firearms Licensing Act
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May 29, 2015

Mr. Garry Breitkreuz

Mr. Speaker, I appreciate that question for the opportunity it gives me to clarify some of the misinformation out there.

We did consult far and wide. In fact, at committee, police organizations were invited to attend. When the member says that it is the unauthorized carry that concerns them, an ATT, as we have it in this legislation, does not allow people to carry a gun in an unauthorized manner. That is a completely false statement. The member is misleading the public.

The ATT, authorization to transport, that would become part of the licence, would not change any of the rules as far as gun owners being able to transport their guns. People would still have to have them locked up, doubly. Most people do not realize that they have to have trigger locks and the guns have to be in a locked case. To be sure, very often gun owners will also lock them in their trunk. Things would not change because of this common sense firearms licensing act.

I wish the member would withdraw the statement that she made. We consulted far and wide. There is nothing here that would compromise public safety.

Topic:   Government Orders
Subtopic:   Common Sense Firearms Licensing Act
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May 29, 2015

Mr. Garry Breitkreuz

However, Mr. Speaker, it seems that the members opposite fail to understand that, as I have pointed out today in a few of their quotations.

However, it gets worse. Despite the objection, it is clear that both the NDP and the Liberals will bring back the wasteful and ineffective long gun registry should they ever get the chance.

The NDP leader said on December 3 of this past year:

I think that it is possible to provide the police with the tools to better protect the public and themselves by making sure they're able to follow every gun....

I have nothing against seeing honest farmers and duck hunters be able to have their weapons. But, you know, that honest hunter who goes out with his pickup truck, it's a registered pickup truck...the trailer's registered and the 4X4 is registered. Heck, his dog is registered.

[New Democrats] have confidence in the ability of farmers and duck hunters to fill out a form.

The Liberal leader has said he voted to keep the firearms registry. He said, “If we had a vote tomorrow, I would vote once against to keep the long-gun registry”.

It gets worse. The Liberal member for Trinity—Spadina said that he even drew a moral equivalency between hunters and jihadi terrorists. It would be unbelievable if it were not from the same party whose former justice minister said that he came to Ottawa firmly of the belief that only the police and military should have access to firearms.

The fact of the matter is that it is only our Conservative government, led by the Prime Minister and the Minister of Public Safety, who will stand up for the rights of law-abiding gun owners.

Approval for the bill is widespread. Let us listen to the former police officer from Saskatchewan, Murray Grismer, who said:

As a veteran police officer, master firearms instructor, and court-qualified expert, I am of the opinion changes to Bill C-42, the common-sense firearms licensing act, contrary to what others would have you believe, do not constitute a threat to public safety, nor do they inhibit a police officer from executing his or her duties. In fact, they enhance public safety and through the simplification of the licensing regime and ATTs greatly assist police officers in the execution of their duties, all done by the application of a little common sense.

Let us listen to Professor Gary Mauser, from Simon Fraser University, in British Columbia, who said:

I do not think that any of the changes in Bill C-42 would increase the danger to women or children through guns. At the present time, only 2% of accused murderers have any kind of firearms licence. That's a PAL, POL or the old FAC. So this is a very small group of people and nothing would change. ...gun ownership is subject to intense scrutiny to achieve a licence, and secondly, nightly to make sure that there are no restraining orders or any kind of offences committed overnight. Nothing in this bill would reduce that.

Greg Illerbrun, from the Saskatchewan Wildlife Federation, said:

...I understand that there are serious disconnects between the legitimate firearms users and those for whom the very mention of the word “gun” strikes unwarranted fear into their hearts. Sadly, this is the reality, which is continuously fuelled by a politically motivated and sensationalist media agenda.

Today's measures do represent common-sense improvement, and for that I thank you. Legitimate firearms owners are ready to get to work. We will help you foster the discussion and assist in creating a common-sense act that stops criminalizing the traditional lifestyle of legitimate firearms users in Canada.

Even the editorial board from the National Post was onside. It said:

...the Common Sense Firearms Licensing Act...is good news for responsible gun owners and good news, as the name suggests, for common sense.

[It shows that] it is possible to streamline the process of legally acquiring a firearm without reducing the already stringent controls on their ownership, and we welcome its...passage.

This is clearly a bill that is supported by a wide cross-section of Canadian society, and what is more important, it is good sound policy that will make Canadians safer, without needless red tape. It will make sure that the criminal justice system focuses on bad guys, not on ordinary folks who forget to fill out a form.

I could go on for much longer on this issue that is very close to my heart, but I see that my time is about to expire. I would like to leave members with one parting thought. At the core of the bill is Canada's outdoors culture. I am the outgoing chair of the all-party parliamentary outdoor caucus, and I am also a member of the Conservative hunting and angling caucus, the only party that has such a body.

Some members of the Liberals and NDP took debate on the bill as an opportunity to engage in a drive-by smear of outdoor enthusiasts, by saying that those who want to obey clear rules are part of “an American-style gun lobby”, as if we should hang our heads in shame at such a moniker. This is patently ridiculous, and it is offensive to the millions of Canadians who engage in hunting and sport shooting.

I want to quote Greg Farrant, from the Ontario Federation of Anglers and Hunters. He said at committee:

Firearms owners in Canada are judges, lawyers, farmers, electricians, mechanics, plumbers, accountants, even federal politicians, many of whom...live in and represent urban ridings. They are not criminals. They are not gang members. Rather, they are lawful firearms owners who obey the law.

The laws as they are currently drafted discourage ownership of firearms and seek to bring about the end of hunting and sport shooting in Canada. We will never stand by and let this happen. Conservatives will always fight for respect for those who enjoy outdoor heritage activities. When the vote comes at third reading on the common sense firearms licensing act, I can assure everyone in this House that the firearms community will be watching, and they will take that into consideration during the events coming up this fall.

I look forward to answering any questions.

Topic:   Government Orders
Subtopic:   Common Sense Firearms Licensing Act
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