Stephen Harper
2 min

QP: Who’s the biggest defender?

Question period kicked off with Nycole
Turmel and Stephen Harper each declaring how much each of them wanted to
defend supply management. Yeah, it was going to be one of those days. Malcolm
Allen and Jean Rousseau picked up from there in both official languages and
brought in the demise of the Canadian Wheat Board as proof that supply
management would be threatened under Trans-Pacific Partnership talks. Ed Fast
assured them that the TPP’s new framework agreement gives Canada room to manoeuvre
while still maintaining supply management. With Bob Rae off in Toronto, it was
Ralph Goodale who rose for the Liberals and asked about the demise of the CWB,
to which Harper answered that they have a strong mandate from prairie farmers. For
his last question, Goodale tied everything together – Buy American,
entry fees, port tariffs, country-of-origin labelling, softwood lumber, you
name it – as unresolved issues in the face of the perimeter security agreement.
Harper shrugged if off, saying that Buy American was going there, and that in
opposition the Liberals hated everything American. So there.

Round two kicked off with Christine
Moore and David Christopherson raising the issue that the Americans may be
mulling pulling out of the F-35 process, but Julian Fantino, in his best
robotic recitation, derisively assured them that the F-35 is the best plane
for our needs. Jack Harris and Françoise Boivin asked about the leaked
departmental memo that said killing the long-gun registry would mean an
increase in weapons smuggling (Toes: That’s factually incorrect!), and Jamie
Nicholls asked about the risks of using the Champlain Bridge (Lebel: There’s no
risk). Marc Garneau and John McKay asked whether the government had a
backup plan if the Americans did pull out of the F-35 process (Fantino: That’s
all just misinformation), and Francis Scarpaleggia asked about the failing
grade we got on a drinking-water report card (John Duncan: We’re working with
First Nations!). Charlie Angus asked about Dean Del Mastro and his motion
before committee about the CBC’s documents (Moore: He’s looking out for
taxpayers!), and Kennedy Stewart and Laurin Liu (of the robot hands) asked about
the Keystone XL delays – reading way too much into them as they congratulated
Obama for giving more time for consultation and input (Joe Oliver: It’s
shameful New Democrats are in Washington to lobby against jobs for Canadians).

Round three saw questions on Service Canada
delays, the $43-billion price tag that climate change will cost our economy,
sexual harassment in the RCMP, extending the deadline to convert RRSPs to RIFs,
sole-source and split contracts coming out of CanNor, the transfer of the
country’s last veterans’ hospital to the provinces, and cuts mentioned in the
supplementary estimates.

Sartorially speaking, snaps go out to Maximum Bernier (as he is sometimes known) for his navy jacket and light blue shirt
with a striped blueberry tie, and to Candice Hoeppner for her fitted black
jacket and top. Style citations to Christine Moore for the pattern overload of
a black top under a half-argyle/half-vertical-striped grey sweater, and a long black-and-grey plaid skirt, and to Alex Atamanenko for his brownish-grey microfibre jacket, pale green shirt and grey tie. Dishonourable mention to Dany Morin for his
black-suit/yellow-shirt combination (especially because he knows better).

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