Interventions in the House of Commons
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View Louis Plamondon Profile
Order, please. It is my duty to inform the House that a Speaker of this House has been duly elected. Let us have a round of applause for all of the House staff who helped me today.
It is with great pleasure that I do now invite the hon. member for the electoral district of Halifax West to take the chair.
Some hon. members: Hear, hear!
(The Presiding Officer having vacated the chair, and the mace having been laid under the table, the right hon. Prime Minister and the hon. Leader of the Opposition conducted Mr. Regan from his seat in the House to the chair.)
View Justin Trudeau Profile
Lib. (QC)
View Justin Trudeau Profile
2015-12-03 16:15 [p.6]
Mr. Speaker, as this is my first opportunity to address Canadians from this my new seat in this august chamber, allow me, before I congratulate you, to thank all Canadians for sending 338 strong individuals to be their representatives in the House. All of us in the House will strive every day to be worthy of the trust they have placed in us individually and collectively.
In particular, I would like to take a moment to thank the people of Papineau for having placed their trust in me a third time. They will remain at the heart of everything I do.
I would like to extend my heartfelt congratulations to you, my esteemed colleague and long-time friend, for having been selected to fill this extremely important role. Maintaining order in the House of Commons is no easy task. The Speaker must ensure that our parliamentary rules and traditions are respected, and defend the rights and privileges of all members, including the right to speak freely.
Mr. Speaker, you bring tremendous experience to this role of Speaker. Clearly, you will have the confidence of all of our hon. colleagues.
To my knowledge, only two women in the history of Canada have had the dubious distinction of being the daughter, the wife, and the mother of a member of Parliament. One of those women is my mother; the other is the Speaker's, whom we see here today. It is in the spirit of openness and transparency that I disclose that familial connection. I had to get that story in before the Speaker starts telling me what I can and cannot say.
I would also like to thank all my esteemed colleagues who ran for the position of Speaker. Canadians are extremely lucky to have such passionate, dedicated people in this place, and I think we can all agree that when it comes to those qualities, no one has more passion and dedication than our friend and colleague from Ottawa—Vanier.
We all need to work together to restore faith and trust in the House of Commons.
Mr. Speaker, I know you will play a role in this effort by promoting respectful, thoughtful debate between members on both sides of the House.
Moving forward, I know that it is important that we have constructive debates in this place on issues that Canadians have told us matter to them. We will work hard to promote more openness across government. We will give Canadians and all members a voice in Ottawa and in this chamber. This also means greater independence of committees, reforming question period, and more free votes.
We have already taken action, and we will do more in the coming weeks and months.
Once again, Mr. Speaker, I would like to congratulate you on your election today.
It is an immense honour and responsibility for which you are uniquely suited.
I look forward to working with you and with all members in this House as we strive to build an even greater country together.
View Geoff Regan Profile
Lib. (NS)
View Geoff Regan Profile
2015-12-03 16:20 [p.7]
I thank the Prime Minister, and I recognize the hon. leader of the official opposition.
View Rona Ambrose Profile
Mr. Speaker, on behalf of myself and the members of the Conservative caucus, I would like to sincerely congratulate you on your election as Speaker of the House of Commons.
Also, happy anniversary to you and Kelly. You get extra brownie points for that one.
Mr. Speaker, you now hold an office that is almost as old as Parliament itself. The earliest year for which a presiding officer has been identified is 1258. In that year, Peter de Montfort presided over the parliament held in Oxford.
The uninterrupted history of the office of Speaker began in 1376 when Sir Peter de la Mare presided over what is known as the “Good Parliament”. The next parliament was styled the “Bad Parliament”. Of course, the titles “Good” and “Bad” had nothing to do with the performance of the administrations of the day, but were more a reflection on the efforts of the members of those parliaments to keep the government in check.
Mr. Speaker, I can assure you that my colleagues and I, who make up Her Majesty's Loyal Opposition, will work hard to earn you the reputation of the Speaker of what historians will one day refer to as “the great Parliament”. That means that you can count on our co-operation at all times and in all circumstances.
On that same note, I would like to tell the Prime Minister, through you, Mr. Speaker, that he too can also count on our co-operation and support when he is acting in the best interest of Canadians.
What is more, if the Prime Minister is wondering what I am prepared to do if he does not act in the best interest of Canadians, then I would tell him to “just watch me”.
Congratulations once again, Mr. Speaker.
View Geoff Regan Profile
Lib. (NS)
View Geoff Regan Profile
2015-12-03 16:24 [p.7]
I thank the hon. leader of the official opposition.
The hon. member for Outremont.
View Thomas Mulcair Profile
View Thomas Mulcair Profile
2015-12-03 16:24 [p.7]
Mr. Speaker, first of all, on behalf of the New Democratic Party, Canada's progressive opposition, I would like to congratulate you on winning the election today. Know that you can always count on our co-operation. As you so eloquently stated, the Speaker plays an essential role in ensuring that all members of the House are always treated fairly.
We listened carefully, Mr. Speaker, as you said that we will no longer be hearing the type of heckling that we have heard in the past here in this House. You are going to have our support every step of the way. I remember that when Jack Layton made me his House leader, he said that we would undertake never to heckle the way it had been done in the past. Journalists laughed and said that would last about three days. However, it lasted the whole Parliament.
The NDP will back you on that, Mr. Speaker, and will be there with you every step of the way.
I have had the opportunity on more than one occasion to test the level of mutual respect between your role and ours. I can assure you that this is a two-way street and that the NDP will always do its part. We will always support you. We know that we all have a responsibility to respect the institution of Parliament. It is the responsibility of all 338 members of the House.
In the coming session, there will be vigorous debate on important issues, whether it be health care; poverty; or first nations, Métis, and Inuit peoples. I can say that we have attended to an important sea change here in this Parliament because there is a larger number of first nations, Inuit, and Métis people in this chamber than ever before in its history. We can all be so proud.
The government made some ambitious promises during the election campaign. Of course, it is our responsibility to ensure that it now turns words into action. The NDP is a progressive opposition that is prepared to help the new government bring about and respect the change that Canadians are longing for.
New Democrats will constructively oppose the new government. We will propose solutions and offer help to achieve the type of constructive change that Canadians want. Our caucus looks forward to working with you, Mr. Speaker. New Democrats will always stand on principle as we move forward with hope and optimism.
View Geoff Regan Profile
Lib. (NS)
View Geoff Regan Profile
2015-12-03 16:28 [p.7]
I thank the hon. member for Outremont.
I recognize the hon. member for Rivière-du-Nord.
View Rhéal Fortin Profile
View Rhéal Fortin Profile
2015-12-03 16:28 [p.7]
Mr. Speaker, on behalf of all members of the Bloc Québécois caucus, I want to congratulate you on being elected to the prestigious office of Speaker of the House of Commons. I also want to pay respect to the member for Don Valley East, the member for Brome—Missisquoi and the member for Simcoe North for putting their names forward. That is always touching to see.
On behalf of the Bloc Québécois, I would also like to express our respect and compassion for our colleague, the hon. member for Ottawa—Vanier, who worked hard in his bid for the position of Speaker and who is now waging his own serious battle. I want our esteemed colleague to know that he has our full support.
Mr. Speaker, I assure you that you will have our full co-operation in upholding our democracy and having meaningful, respectful debates in the House. The House can also count on us to work diligently to protect and promote the interests, rights, and privileges of all the voters who put their trust in us. We are excited and hopeful to hear you talk about meaningful, respectful debate. You can count on our co-operation.
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