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Results: 1 - 16 of 16
View Elizabeth May Profile
GP (BC)
View Elizabeth May Profile
2019-04-29 12:31 [p.27084]
Mr. Speaker, I am hoping for something that probably is not possible, and that is if we could take some of the partisanship out of this motion and look at it as a deeply generic problem of every government in the country, provincial and federal, regardless of who is in the PMO. Corporate lobbies have too much influence.
There is an excellent book by the former leader of the Alberta Liberal Party, Kevin Taft. His book is called Oil's Deep State, in which he chronicles how it was that even with a change of government in Alberta, the control over government policy, particularly energy policy, was deeply held by big oil. The term that is used by academics a lot is the problem of “captive” regulators. The National Energy Board is captive to the industry it regulates and so is Health Canada quite captive to big pharma. We could go issue by issue, department by department.
I would ask my hon. colleague if he thinks we could elevate this debate by looking at the problem generically and not targeting just one party. I would put to him that it is endemic.
View Elizabeth May Profile
GP (BC)
View Elizabeth May Profile
2019-04-29 12:58 [p.27089]
Mr. Speaker, my hon. colleague, the parliamentary secretary for environment and climate change, knows how deeply I lament the weakness of the government's plan, just as much or more than I lament the fact that the Conservatives have no plan. The Liberal plan will take us nowhere near Stephen Harper's old target, which puts us on a path, as the hon. parliamentary secretary well knows, to catastrophic climate breakdown that could deprive our own children of a livable world.
We are in a climate emergency, yet in this place, as in many parliaments around the world, we continue to pretend that the incremental efforts to do something in the right direction should be applauded, even as we know, and this is a really enormous example of cognitive dissonance, that what we are doing now is not enough to protect our children.
The Conservatives may not know it. Some do. Certainly some hon. Conservative members know it. The NDP should know it, but its plans are also nowhere near achieving the kinds of reductions that actually are about phasing out fossil fuels, 100%, by 2050 and cutting Canada's use of fossil fuels by at least 50% within a decade.
I do not think it is solely corporate influence, but can the hon. parliamentary secretary deny that corporate influence is a big part of why a government tries to have its cake and eat it too? It brings in carbon taxes and then buys a pipeline.
View Elizabeth May Profile
GP (BC)
View Elizabeth May Profile
2019-04-29 13:13 [p.27091]
Mr. Speaker, to my hon. colleague from Leeds—Grenville—Thousand Islands and Rideau Lakes, I am again going to point out that the differences are not so much differences but continuing evidence that companies like SNC-Lavalin, or the large corporate influencers in Canada, get through doors that other Canadians cannot get through, whether they are civil service doors or political election doors.
We heard the earlier example of the trip to Libya involving then Conservative foreign affairs minister John Baird. However, the elevation of the people associated with this scandal by former prime minister Stephen Harper includes Arthur Porter, who was implicated in a bribery scandal with SNC-Lavalin over the McGill hospital issue. He was given the highest security clearance in this country and was made the head of the Security Intelligence Review Committee by former prime minister Harper.
The man who was the chair of SNC-Lavalin through all of the dealings that are before the court at the moment, and who was also chair of the governance committee, was another one of Stephen Harper's most trusted and closest corporate friends. That was Gwyn Morgan. He has a career in the energy business, but Stephen Harper put him forward to be the head of the national public appointments commission.
My point here is not to attack any one individual, but to say that the pattern of government influence by corporations like SNC-Lavalin, regardless of who is in office, is a real problem. We should be getting at that. How do we root out what is essentially systemic levels of corruption, because our governments in general have become too beholden to corporate interests and influence?
View Elizabeth May Profile
GP (BC)
View Elizabeth May Profile
2019-04-29 13:16 [p.27091]
Mr. Speaker, I rise on a question of personal privilege. There is no need whatsoever for the member for Leeds—Grenville—Thousand Islands and Rideau Lakes to suggest for one minute that I want anything other than to be the elected member for Saanich—Gulf Islands. I have no interest in personal advancement and I am not pandering to any political interest for personal advancement. I ask him to withdraw his unnecessary and absolutely unworthy comment.
View Elizabeth May Profile
GP (BC)
View Elizabeth May Profile
2019-02-28 15:10 [p.25931]
Mr. Speaker, advice from my heart to my friends in the Liberal Party: Do not dispute the truth of what our former minister of justice has said. Do not attempt to question or undermine or impugn her integrity. No one will believe them if they do.
What the Liberals must do is tell the truth and let the chips fall where they may, starting with these three steps: call for a public inquiry, release the former minister of justice from restrictions on her evidence and fire the Clerk of the Privy Council office.
View Elizabeth May Profile
GP (BC)
View Elizabeth May Profile
2019-02-28 20:08 [p.25971]
Madam Speaker, the patterns and the culture of the power brokers in this town have not changed all that much, although the faces have changed. We must get to the bottom of it and change the culture.
There is an unfortunate tendency to decide, in powerful organizations like the PCO and the PMO, that if there is a problem in the way, we can find a workaround. If there is a law we do not like, we can skirt it. If there are problems of ethics, well maybe we can write some op-eds. I do not find that the culture has changed from the Harper years until now.
We have an opportunity now to root out a big part of the problem. It is political, but it is also that the senior civil service in this country has become far too political. I would ask that in this House, in this emergency debate, we consider that the testimony of Michael Wernick and the testimony of the former attorney general provide a contrast in which she has all the credibility.
View Elizabeth May Profile
GP (BC)
View Elizabeth May Profile
2019-02-28 20:51 [p.25976]
Madam Speaker, the member for Leeds—Grenville—Thousand Islands and Rideau Lakes referenced, as many have tonight, the role of SNC-Lavalin's lawyer. He was referenced, through hearsay, in something said by the Clerk of the Privy Council to our former attorney general and minister of justice.
Frank Iacobucci is not a shrinking violet. He is playing an interesting role here. I wonder if my friend finds it curious in any way that SNC-Lavalin's lawyer was the choice of the Prime Minister to run the indigenous consultations in the repairing of the flawed consultations on the Kinder Morgan pipeline. He is still playing that role while he is SNC-Lavalin's lawyer.
View Elizabeth May Profile
GP (BC)
View Elizabeth May Profile
2019-02-28 21:04 [p.25978]
Mr. Speaker, I thank my Bloc Québécois colleague from Repentigny.
I think this is a really difficult decision. I think that everyone is concerned about the future of the jobs at that company. However, we still have a problem. If SNC-Lavalin is guilty, it is very serious.
There is work to be done. Other companies offer the same types of jobs building bridges, dams and roads.
Is it possible for the government to find another solution to protect the jobs, other than engaging in political behaviour that goes against our laws, our regulations and our Constitution?
View Elizabeth May Profile
GP (BC)
View Elizabeth May Profile
2019-02-28 21:37 [p.25982]
Mr. Speaker, I was watching the members opposite and I just wanted to say that if he noticed someone laughing, and I am not saying he did not, but I certainly did not. I felt it was important to say that the members opposite in the Liberal benches appear to be taking this matter as seriously as we do. Although I deeply disagree with the tack they are taking, I do not see laughter.
To my hon. friend for Cariboo—Prince George, does he agree with me? I think the former attorney general answered my question clearly at committee that she did not think that the Criminal Code had been transgressed. However, until we get to the bottom of this, I think it is an open question, so I do not allege criminality in this matter. However, I think it remains a possibility and I would like to see the RCMP take over an investigation.
I disagree with my friend, the parliamentary secretary. The Ethics Commissioner has a very narrow mandate and it certainly does not allow the Ethics Commissioner to look into things, other than a member of Parliament's personal conduct for personal reward. These are public policy issues and the Constitution and they require, I believe, an independent investigation by the RCMP.
View Elizabeth May Profile
GP (BC)
View Elizabeth May Profile
2019-02-28 21:52 [p.25984]
Mr. Speaker, I am struggling with trying to reconcile the behaviour, and I am grateful he raised the question of how a non-partisan Clerk of Privy Council is supposed to conduct him or herself.
Many years ago, from 1986-88, I worked in the office of the federal minister of environment in a majority Progressive Conservative government under Brian Mulroney. The behaviour of federal senior civil servants in those days bears no relationship whatsoever to the kind of thuggery that was reported yesterday. However, it is not that new to see this kind of contamination of our federal civil servants. It has been coming on for some time.
I wonder if the hon. member for Perth—Wellington would agree with me that we have a deeper cultural problem to restore a truly independent, expert, non-partisan civil service.
View Elizabeth May Profile
GP (BC)
View Elizabeth May Profile
2019-02-28 22:09 [p.25986]
Mr. Speaker, that is the perfect segue for not putting words in someone's mouth. I know the hon. member was probably trying to paraphrase the question I asked yesterday at the justice committee, but the way I put it was very clear. I asked if there was a violation of the Criminal Code. I did not ask, as was reported here, if anything illegal had transpired. I agree with the interpretation of the hon. member for Wellington—Halton Hills. However, I want what I asked the former attorney general and how she answered to be clear on the record.
View Elizabeth May Profile
GP (BC)
View Elizabeth May Profile
2019-02-28 23:11 [p.25995]
Mr. Speaker, I have a question for my colleague.
During our former attorney general's testimony, it was clear that she had made a decision based on section 13 notices. As members of Parliament, we do not have access to this notice, but our former attorney general clearly thought it was rational, clear and reasonable.
I do not see how anyone could expect her to act otherwise, given the independence of the attorney general at the Department of Justice. Her main role is to make decisions, and it is also up to her to determine whether it is reasonable.
This evening's debate raises a lot of concerns for me. How can anyone think she should hold broad consultations with Canadians? That is a legal question that falls under the purview of the Department of Justice and its officials.
View Elizabeth May Profile
GP (BC)
View Elizabeth May Profile
2019-02-20 15:30 [p.25562]
Mr. Speaker, now that you have consented to look into the matter, with some trepidation I weigh in to say that the client is not the Prime Minister; the client is the Government of Canada. We in this place need to understand Westminster parliamentary democracy. We are not run by one person on either side of the House. Therefore, I do not think the Prime Minister, individually, is the government, nor is the Prime Minister, individually, the client, and I did not find it improper for him to vote.
View Elizabeth May Profile
GP (BC)
View Elizabeth May Profile
2019-02-19 13:28 [p.25502]
Mr. Speaker, I want to thank my hon. colleague for her very kind words about my role in this place. I do try to be non-partisan and it is never anything but entirely productive. For me, it is a real privilege to work with the hon. member across the way. We have done some good things in committee on a number of amendments related to justice.
My question is from the bottom of my heart. I am not rushing to judgment, I just want the former attorney general, former minister of justice, to be relieved from solicitor-client privilege so that she can directly answer the questions. It would clear the air. Goodness knows there are critical issues that this Parliament should be discussing.
I know this issue is loaded with hyper-partisanship and I understand why some of the Liberal benches find it too much, but honestly, from where I sit, being as fair as I can be, the Prime Minister should relieve the former minister of justice and former attorney general of the constraints of solicitor-client privilege so that she can freely answer questions and clear this up.
View Elizabeth May Profile
GP (BC)
View Elizabeth May Profile
2018-02-01 15:46 [p.16658]
Mr. Speaker, I have read proposed section 4 over and over again. Perhaps it is bad drafting, which is a terrible thing to say at the point where we are at report stage. However, despite proposed subsection 3, a regulated fundraising event does not include any event that is part of a convention and is organized to express appreciation. Therefore, it could be organized to express appreciation, but that kind of event does indeed give access to key decision makers, which does not end up getting reported and is not open to the media.
Even after hearing the explanation from the acting chief electoral officer, which I have heard before, I am baffled by his position. Of course, I respect him, but in the context of what Bill C-50 is trying to deal with, special access for people with lots of money to key decision makers, the exemption for conventions does not sit right with me. I am hearing what my hon. colleague is saying, but I am not persuaded.
View Elizabeth May Profile
GP (BC)
View Elizabeth May Profile
2017-06-15 11:06 [p.12744]
Mr. Speaker, it is true that political party leaders do fundraisers, and people buy tickets to come to those fundraisers. However, when the political party leader becomes the prime minister, there is a very large and important distinction to be made that we do not want government policy influenced by those who can get in the room.
Does it not seem to the parliamentary secretary that it is time to actually face the reality that to ensure that politics in this country is not contaminated by those with undue influence through access of all kinds, but particularly for cash, it is time to have public financial support for political parties at a low level, to reduce the amount of spending political parties can do in terms of buying advertising during election campaigns, and to otherwise overhaul the system to eliminate, once and for all, the spectre of deep pockets influencing government?
Results: 1 - 16 of 16

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